I saw this headline on the design section of Wired.com this morning, “A High-Tech Street Sign That’s Plugged Into Social Media,” and was intrigued to read more. What a cool OOH concept – taking the age-old street sign and making it “smart” by allowing it to show different data points of interest that people can interact with. It still has the original functionality of a street sign – pointing you towards your desired destination – but also arming you with much more data on that destination, or even other information, through Foursquare, Twitter, Public Transporation APIs, or RSS feeds. Think street sign-meets GPS-meets-Yelp.
The concept is still in infancy, and requires much more testing before a mass roll-out, but this could be an interesting execution platform for companies and/or advertisers. The article mentions museums, conferences, and festivals as places where these advanced directional signs would be useful, and next month places like Las Vegas, Dubai, and hotels will begin to rent out the device.
This potentially could be a cool execution for B2B companies to rent for say, Industry Tradeshows or Conferences. Imagine attendees going from keynotes to breakouts to happy hour, and finding exact locations using these signs instead of filing through booklets or printouts or asking the nearest show hosts. Out of towners can also access other information – nearest sushi restaurant, the score of the NBA finals game, latest tweets from tech figureheads, etc. – if desired.
Still, I’m not sure how it’ll work in places with large crowds. Imagine 10,000 people standing in line at CES waiting to use this sign just to find out where to buy a cup of coffee or what time the next MGM Grand shuttle is arriving. In the meantime, I’ll probably just continue to use my smartphone 😉
Just Media, Inc.