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Advertisers to pay for drive-by viewings

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Google is full of surprises this year more than others; first they agree to pay some taxes, and now they have announced that the launch of their self-drive cars will offer advertisers the chance to increase impressions on their ads by getting the cars to drive past specific outdoor sites.

Whilst fundamentally the cars will be programmed to get from A to B in the most efficient way possible, the big spenders will be able to change the course slightly, and send the Google car and it’s passengers via specific JC Decaux sites in the world’s biggest cities. The test will start in Los Angeles in 2018 and roll out to New York, London and Paris thereafter.

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Initially, this scheme will be purely for brands with deep pockets, with Samsung and Proctor & Gamble expressing early interest. The assumption is that advertisers will pay for the big outdoor site as usual, but will then pay an added fee for each person targeted via the self-drive cars. Where this becomes a bit more exciting is the potential to have personalised messages on big digital screens based on who will be driving by. In the initial stages there are likely to be very few self-driven cars on the road, so having special messages for the ‘passenger’ linked to the times they are driving by wouldn’t cause too many problems – and of course, it doesn’t matter that they might get distracted.

It is not unreasonable to imagine a world where somebody has their Google account linked to all of their digital devices, and so as they drive past their personalised message on a large billboard, why couldn’t a picture of their reaction be emailed to them, posted to Facebook, Twitter and whatever else may exist by then. This is still at least a couple of years away and the details remain quite sketchy – but if there is one thing we can say for sure it is that your cost per visit (CpV) will be cheaper on TV!

Please note: This is of course an April Fool’s article and in no way true. Hope you enjoyed it.