NEWS24 January 2013

Posterscope and JCDecaux debut ‘VirtuoCity’ simulation research technology

Technology UK

UK — Posterscope and JCDecaux have worked in partnership to launch new bespoke research technology, known as VirtuoCity. The outdoor agencies claim that it will allow brands to better understand consumer engagement with out-of-home (OOH) advertising.

VirtuoCity is described by the agencies as “a sophisticated driving simulation.” It places respondents behind the wheel of a car in a virtual world, as they drive through the suburbs and into the town centre. Specialist technology measures respondents’ eye movement in response to computer-generated OOH posters while they drive, and afterwards they answer a recall questionnaire.

The aim of the technology is to try to build a unique picture of consumer behaviour that will allow brands to better understand consumer engagement with their OOH advertising.These will then be used to create an engagement index for statistical modelling.

David Gordon, insight director at Posterscope, said: “Placing the consumer at the heart of planning OOH is central to our work at Posterscope and VirtuoCity pushes the boundaries of consumer integration. The better that brands are able to understand how people think, feel and act in the out-of-home space, the greater chance advertisers have of creating affective OOH campaigns. This development opens up a lot of opportunities for brands and has the potential to transform the OOH medium.”

Chris Felton, head of research at JCDecaux, added: “VirtuoCity enables planners to ensure clients’ outdoor campaigns are delivered in the most effective and efficient way using the very latest research techniques and technology. Today’s launch is the culmination of two years of collaboration between JCDecaux and Posterscope to bring this research tool to the market. It has been specifically developed to coincide with Postar 2, providing planners with an engagement index for the different environments and formats, complementing Postar’s industry currency.”