Coca-Cola does the Zeno shuffle

The innovative OOH technology, launching in the CN Tower in Toronto next month, brings static poster images to life.

If Karen McGuire has her way, advertisers may soon be doing the ‘Zeno shuffle.’

It’s a term coined by the president of Toronto-based OOH media company Zeno Motion (formerly Zeno Global) to describe the consumer double-take when passing a Zeno Motion Panel, a singular, high-resolution, backlit poster that comes to ‘life’ when it detects motion nearby.

‘It’s a really different product,’ McGuire tells MiC, noting that the customized, viewer-controlled experience is flexible enough to incorporate video footage, 3D elements, existing TV commercials and images. ‘We can take existing creative and very easily adapt it.’

A 45-foot-long (13.72 metre) Zeno Motion Panel is currently on display at the CN Tower walkway, where the product will be officially unveiled on March 3. The execution was developed in partnership with the CN Tower and Toronto-based agency The Collective.

One brand on board at launch is Coca-Cola. As a pedestrian walks up the ramp, they experience a moving Coke snowboarding ‘Open Happiness’ commercial on every third panel.

McGuire says she hopes to announce three or four more advertising deals in time for the March 3 launch.

A  test with Pattison Outdoor at the Scarborough Town Centre last fall yields impressive impression results, she adds. ‘Our research results were fabulous: we had a 93% recall rate on brands, 92% on product.’

A proprietary software component triggers the technology, with a black panel and black bars running vertically across the hardware lightbox, and turns the video and 3D elements into a static print. ‘Once we put it into the panel, the black bars act as shutters and as people walk by, there’s a sense of motion,’ says McGuire.

Location, of course, is everything. ‘First of all, we put a Zeno sign in places where people are in motion,’ McGuire explains. ‘That generally is an empty wall space, because as people are walking by, it isn’t suitable for a static, and it isn’t suitable for a video display.’

McGuire says the interactive element pays off with longer viewing time. ‘From an advertising standpoint, the 45 feet of the CN Tower installation allows for 27 seconds of freight video. People spend an average of 40 seconds in front of the panel. So there’s a real engagement to the product.’

And although it’s modular, McGuire says the sky’s the limit in terms of size capability. ‘If you have a wall, the installation can be the length of a football field.’