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Ambient Ads: How In-Hand Advertising Can Help You

Ambient Ads

There is a struggle in the mainstream advertising media for the top spot. Certainly, it is becoming clearer to traditional media like TV and print media that the war is unwinnable. Already, digital media (or the new advertising media) has taken over the US advertising industry. Besides digital platforms, alternative advertising concepts like ambient marketing are chipping away at traditional media’s market share.

What is ambient marketing?

According to this analysis, ambient marketing is an advertising technique where marketers use unconventional means to sell brands. Notably, advertisers place advertisements on unusual places like a restaurant placemat, a bar coaster, or a pizza box. Particularly, the intention is to catch the audience unawares and in a way that they cannot ignore the advertisement. For example, customers in a bar cannot ignore an ad plastered on a coaster right in front of their eyes. Every time one lifts the glass, the ad will be there broadcasting its message loud and clear.
 The concept of Ambient Marketing refers to the usage of attention-grabbing events by utilizing contextual elements of the target groups. This niche media surged to overcome traditional methods of advertising to get the attention of consumers.
One of the sub-segments of Ambient Marketing is In-Hand advertising. This concept relies on placing ads on consumables that the target audience can’t ignore as they must take them in their hands. Such consumables can be: door hangerspizza box toppersprescription bagsdrink coastersCustom Coffee Sleeveshotel key cards.
Here some practical examples:
  • An anti-DIU awareness campaign that can be placed on beer coasters in NYC bars
  • A healthcare message on branded pharmacy bags in reputable pharmacy venues close to hospitals
  • The new entertainment center offering a coupon discount on coffee cups targeting millennials
  • A high-end product advertised on hotel room key cards targeting travelers
  • The new fitness center offering a promo code on pizza boxes after ingesting a decent amount of calories!
Indeed, ambient marketing achieves targeting levels that traditional can only dream off. Say you run a sneaker business and you would like to market your products to college students. All you need to do is to print pizza boxes and deliver them to a pizzeria within your target college. Interestingly, the conversion rates that such a marketing campaign can produce are mindboggling.

Overcoming the high billboard costs

 It is well known that Traditional OOH advertising as billboards demonstrate a lack of targeting and tracking, low engagement , high costs, low ROI.  Many commuters are subjected to dozens of billboards each day with limited attention span generating a low brand recall.  Many cities in the world also prohibited the use of billboards due to its visual pollution. The targeting issues are very often addressed with alternative approaches as mobile billboards, digital OOH, ads on trucks and ads in places people don’t expect as flags, backpacks, inflatable objects, gas pump and balloons.
With the cost of billboard/month, the advertiser can place its message on 40,000 coffee sleeves to 40 different coffee shops during the same period of time.