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Consumer Using Clear Channel Outdoor's Connect Platform To Receive Advertiser Info And Offers On Their Mobile Device Using NFC Or QR Code. (Photo: Business Wire)

In a world first, Clear Channel Outdoor (CCO), the leading innovator in out-of-home advertising, announced today that it is rolling out Connect , its global interactive mobile advertising platform, representing a major development in the evolution of out-of-home media worldwide – and generating more opportunities for consumers and brands to connect. Connect creates seamless integration between out-of-home and mobile, driving deeper brand engagement with consumers when they are out and about.

Consumer using Clear Channel Outdoor's Connect platform to receive advertiser info and offers on the ...

Consumer using Clear Channel Outdoor's Connect platform to receive advertiser info and offers on their mobile device using NFC or QR code. (Photo: Business Wire)

With Connect, advertising panels on CCO’s pedestrian-accessible sites across the globe will be turned into mobile launch pads, enabling consumers to access interactive content from advertisers via their smartphones.

By June 2014, CCO will:

  • Create a mobile network reaching 175 million consumers monthly across 23 countries on 5 continents;
  • Equip 75,000 outdoor sites with Connect tags enabled for Near Field Communication (NFC), QR code, and in Latin America, SMS capabilities; and
  • Offer marketers the biggest out-of-home/mobile interactive platform from any media owner and the only one with a global scale.

William Eccleshare, CEO of Clear Channel Outdoor, said, “We have made this investment because all our intelligence tells us this is what consumers want, to be able to engage with brands individually, immediately and effectively. We are bridging the online and offline worlds by combining our outstanding audience reach with personal engagement through mobile devices. The global rollout of Connect accelerates the metamorphosis of out-of-home advertising from being the oldest form of advertising to the most modern and creative.”

He added, “At Clear Channel Outdoor, we take pride in being a company of advertising firsts. We were the first to introduce the public bike scheme; the first to deliver an outdoor digital street furniture network; and the first to run a facial recognition campaign. We have done it once again with Connect as we are the first to roll out this interactive mobile platform on such an international scale.”

The Connect tags are permanently attached to digital or static panels on pedestrian-accessible sites with heavy footfall and long dwell-time, such as street furniture – including bus shelters and similar street-level advertising structures – shopping malls, airports and at other points-of-sale.

Consumers simply tap or scan their smartphone over Connect ’s NFC tag or QR code to instantly open a gateway to an online brand experience. In CCO’s Latin American markets, the platform will also run with the addition of SMS capability; a tailored SMS code will appear on the outdoor advert.

Advertisers can offer a range of consumer benefits which can be grouped into 4 main categories:

  • Information – search, maps, location-relevant, utility
  • Shopping – transactional, discounts / couponing
  • Entertainment – gaming, video, photos, apps
  • Community – social media, text / IM, sharing

Advertisers and planners will also benefit from the rich data and metrics captured by Connect , including date, time, location, conversion of click-thru’s, and even which kinds of devices were used - all allowing for campaign optimization, performance review and delivery of ROI.

Connect is another important leap in our mission to facilitate closer connections between brands and consumers through enhanced outdoor and mobile capabilities,” said Suzanne Grimes, President and Chief Operating Officer, Clear Channel Outdoor – North America. “With Connect, we offer advertisers easier and more nimble access to mobile-interactive campaigns as they no longer need to spend time creating NFC tags or QR codes. Via our preinstalled tags, we seamlessly direct consumers to advertisers’ mobile optimized content.”

“With the rise of social media, consumers increasingly expect to be involved in advertising campaigns and to have relationships with brands, yet they often reject advertising interruptions in other mediums. Connect presents the opportunity to target consumers on-the-go, when they are receptive to messages and can be delighted by timely, relevant and tailored invitations to engage,” added Grimes.

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