Commentary

Danaher Heads Industry Org

The Digital Place-based Advertising Association is getting a new president in the person of Susan Danaher, who was formerly president of Reactrix, the innovative but now-defunct company best known for pioneering gesture-based interactive digital displays. Danaher is filling the spot previously occupied by Suzanne LaForgia, who left the top spot at DPAA in June to become executive vice-president for ad sales at RMG Networks; LaForgia continues to serve as the DPAA's treasurer.

Danaher is taking the reins at the DPAA, previously known as the Out-of-home Video Advertising Bureau, as the burgeoning medium reaches a crucial juncture in its development. Dgital out-of-home advertising still faces a number of hurdles before it can achieve the kind of scale enjoyed by the Internet and TV. Chief among these issues is scale itself, as the medium remains fairly fragmented between many competing networks, making it cumbersome for media agencies to plan and buy DO campaigns.

Addressing issues of scale and complexity will be one of the main areas of focus for Danaher -- a logical follow-up to LaForgia's work formulating measurement guidelines and encouraging DO networks to adopt comparable metrics, OVAB's first mission from its founding in 2006.

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In addition to her tenure at Reactrix from 2007-2008, Danaher spent almost three decades in the media business, working in various capacities for companies including Y&R, Benton & Bowles, USA Network, Turner Broadcasting and MTV Networks.

On the agency side, in July Posterscope USA's Hyperspace unit unveiled a new "Screengallery" Web site featuring promotional videos and photography for digital out-of-home screen networks, allowing advertisers to see various DO networks in action.

The networks are broken down into categories including travel, retail, roadside and digital spectaculars, medical and fitness, office and education, leisure, and "other."

Also in July, BroadSign International, which creates digital signage software, unveiled its partnership with with rVue, Inc., which operates a demand-side platform for buying DO media. The partners are integrating their systems, allowing users of rVue's Web-based planning service to find advertising inventory on 21 DO networks that use BroadSign software. The rVue service also lets them negotiate rates, create insertion orders and follow campaign execution through the same interface.

Last but not least, MediaVest has introduced a new proprietary planning tool for advertising clients that ranks 33 out-of-home channels (including DO networks) as platforms for different brand categories and reaching specific demographics. In addition to ranking the platforms, the MediaVest application helps media buyers determine the optimal mix of out-of-home channels to achieve brand and audience targeting goals.

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