A few thoughts on potential blog posts have been running through my pollen-soaked and congested brain over the past week or so. The common theme is that each has emanated from other sources in the DOOH blogosphere, so perhaps commenting on all of them will result in something readable… or at least clear my head.
Congratulations to TouchTunes on the pending deal with Victory Acquisition Corp. announced yesterday. I was travelling all day yesterday, and only learned of the deal on Dave Haynes’ Sixteen:Nine blog. Under the terms of the agreement, it appears that TouchTunes will become a publicly (NASDAQ) traded and very well-capitalized company. Ron Greenberg and his team have built an impressive company and a gigantic network by any measure. It looks like one of the goals of the deal will be to further monetize the TouchTunes network and relationships with advertising. Looks like a good plan to me, and I am happy to see M&A activity of note in the industry.
Over on Wirespring’s blog, where the prolific Bill Gerba has enlisted a cadre of guest columnists, industry consultant Pat Hellberg posted a piece decrying the sameness of “elevator pitches” at a trade show. I can imagine that a potential buyer walking the floor gets an earful. As a long time trade show dray horse, however, my view is that people who have done a little homework never get an elevator pitch, they get a discussion. The folks with fake names on their badges who walk up and ask “what do you do?” get the elevator pitch. Meanwhile, Pat felt compelled to lob a couple of gratuitous softballs for EnQii and Reflect executives to smash down the fairway in sanctimonious fashion. I can’t fault them for swinging away, but what was the motivation there? Forgive my inquisitiveness, but I wonder why Pat didn’t seem inclined to provide a platform for the CoolSign folks he selected when he ran the Nike network. Slipping into his industry hat, Pat puts out a call for an industry “meta-pitch” by asking rhetorical questions about what we are nas an industry. My take on that? We are neither “advertising”, nor “storytelling” nor “information exchange” per se. We are targeted out-of-home communications, capable of highly customized rich media messaging in the most appropriate delivery context. Not sure if that is elevator worthy, but I gave it a shot.
Aka.tv ran a piece by AV integrator Gary Kayye with his take on the DSE conference in Las Vegas. Mr. Kayye makes some good points about fragmentation, PCs and integration with personalized technology. Most of his points, as one would expect, come from the perspective of an AV person. A couple of interesting observations emerge: First, he describes the best pitch he heard as coming from a non-exhibitor, Westinghouse, who had set up camp in a suite at the nearby Hilton. Thanks for your support of the industry, Westinghouse. Way to go! Mr. Kayye also references Wireless Ronin as a “biggie” in the industry. I have tried mightily to refrain from piling on with regard to Ronin, but they are very publicly not a biggie, unless your barometers for bigness include executive turnover, wasted marketing dollars and cash incineration. Finally, Mr. Kayye makes an excellent point related to the chasm between AV integrators and IT integrators, and how the Europeans have done a better job of embracing the former. There is something there to learn from.
DailyDOOH uncovered a piece in Mediaweek by Show+Tell’s Phil Lenger. I have to agree with Adrian, it is a compelling and quick read. The article led me to Show+Tell’s website, which has some nice presentation of industry landscape. Well done.
Last stop on the blog tour is Nate Nead’s Digital Signage blog, where in a rambling post on content, Nate asks (with an intro that pays homage to David Bowie), if “Content is King, _________ is Queen?” Nate, even David Bowie would have to agree: Freddie Mercury is Queen. Rock on.