New Out-of-Home Ad Space: Recycling Machines

vending machine Advertisers are getting access to a new interactive out-of-home ad platform that is close to the point of sale. That's thanks to Tomra, which operates a network of recycling machines at supermarkets and other retail locations across the U.S.

The company is introducing poster spaces, video messages and product-specific coupons to its "reverse vending machines," which sort and accept recyclable beverage containers. In addition to supermarkets, it operates RVMs at sports stadiums, amusement parks and university campuses.

Tomra emphasized the proximity of the machines to the point of sale, noting that most people who recycle cans and bottles at the machines do so before they go shopping. The company also touted the opportunity for advertisers to associate their products with an environmentally friendly "green" activity.



The dwell time--a few minutes--allows advertisers to present a fully articulated message via the built-in video screens. The target audience is also attractive. Tomra pointed to studies showing that consumers who return empties before shopping spend up to 52% more during their shopping visits.

The combination of video advertising and coupon distribution has attracted growing interest as an in-store marketing strategy.

Last year ShopRite launched a pilot program in 220 grocery stores on the East Coast testing SmartCarts, powered by Microsoft, which use digital screens attached to shopping carts to display advertising based on the shopper's physical location in the store. The SmartCarts can further refine ad targeting with information about the consumer's past preferences and their current shopping list, collected via customer loyalty programs.

In addition, ShoptoCook operates a chain of interactive kiosks that allow shoppers to browse meal ideas and recipes and print free coupons during their visit. Also, Giant Food Stores operates its own proprietary network of interactive Shopping Solutions and Recipe Solutions kiosks. Healthnotes operates Fresh Ideas kiosks, which allow users to browse recipes and tips on fresh foods and health-related products.

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