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Polygon launches first programmatic mini-bus network in SA

Polygon, one of South Africa’s largest aggregated digital out of home (DOOH) publisher networks, has initiated a new project that will see it integrating mini-buses and taxis into its programmatic network, helping advertisers reach South African commuters, en masse, as they go about their daily lives.

The mini-bus network, operated by Transmutanet in the Cape Town area, offers two powerful marketing opportunities: advertisers can either flight their ads on the high-definition digital screens located behind the driver’s seat, which serves infotainment and advertising to commuters or engage the taxi’s onboard wifi for lead generation.

Explains Remi du Preez, Managing Director at Polygon: ‘These onboard screens have been connected to Polygon’s network and now – for the first time – Google platform advertisers can serve ads directly into the taxi environment.’

He adds that while the concept of using a screen inside a taxi to serve ads is not new, the loop-based models previously used were sometimes viewed as unreliable, as it was difficult to ascertain whether screens were online and ads were flighting within mini-buses. ‘With these screens being programmatically connected through Polygon’s network, clients have a direct and clear view of what is happening at screen-level because they own the interface that allows them to transact with these screens.’

In terms of the opportunity offered through the onboard wifi, Du Preez explains that when commuters log in to the vehicle’s internet, Polygon will prompt users to opt-in for marketing services, driving lead generation for advertisers. ‘Once commuters are online, there are additional advertising touchpoints along the user journey that marketers can take advantage of.’

Du Preez adds that this move will allow advertisers to reach a large, mobile audience, with Polygon now offering the first programmatic transit network in the country. ‘Advertisers will also be able to collect first-party data on audiences, which means they can directly attribute a cost per lead in this dual DOOH and mobile environment.’ He adds that for leads-based businesses, Polygon’s network-based model offers advertisers the full marketing funnel; from awareness, to lead and ultimately, conversion.

Director at Transmutanet, Faried Davids, says it is excited about the collaboration with Polygon as the company expects to increase its exposure while fostering new revenue streams for the mini-bus network. ‘We’re thrilled to be a partner in growing this network and the technology that will lead to its roll-out across the country.’

Du Preez concludes: ‘As part of our quest to connect all screens across the continent – offering advertisers a single point of entry into a powerful, programmatically-enabled DOOH network – this latest move will allow our clients to tap into an audience that holds considerable buying power. We believe this will open new doors and uncover exciting opportunities for advertisers, while also providing us with a powerful case study for integrating other transit networks in the future.’

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