Innovation That Matters

| Photo source Sustainable Skylines

Smart, green advertising in the sky

Advertising & Marketing

One company combines drone technology, data analytics, and AI to make aerial ads both sustainable and effective

Spotted: Though targeted online ads can be highly effective, 54 per cent of people also find them intrusive. In addition, the sheer volume of online advertising makes it hard for companies to stand out, with internet users often scrolling straight past any ad out of habit. Helping brands to stand out in the sea of online ads is Miami-based Sustainable Skylines, an aerial advertising company that is bringing the traditional practice of sky marketing into the 21st century – using drones. 

Sustainable Skylines guides brands from start to finish – assisting with the creative design of a banner, planning the flight path, and analysing the campaign’s success once completed. Benefitting from its exclusive partnership with aviation company Velary and its Vertical Take-Off and Landing technology (VTOL), the company is able to fly slower and closer to the ground than the planes that are traditionally used. 

And crucially, the process is also greener, only using three gallons of unleaded fuel for a four-hour flight of its hybrid-electric drones, compared with the 30 gallons of leaded aviation fuel needed by a single-engine plane for the same journey. Because of this, the company believes its method cuts 90 per cent of aerial advertising’s carbon footprint. 

Instead of a campaign’s success being measured anecdotally, Sustainable Skylines provides an intelligent web-based analytics platform so that brands can monitor the impact of a banner. With the help of AI and computer vision, the company processes live footage of a journey to understand the reach of an ad and how many people were likely to have seen it. Using third-party cellular and geospatial datasets, the company can see exactly how many people on the ground below visited a website following a drone’s flight. With the first- and third-party data combined, Sustainable Skylines gets an accurate picture of a campaign’s success, allowing it to be further optimised in future. 

As well as partnering with Velary, Sustainable Skylines has also joined forces with Mitsubishi Electric, Auvsi, and the Out of Home Advertising Association of America (OAAA).

In the archive, Springwise has spotted other innovations working to make advertising greener, including resources to help marketers decarbonise and a tool to calculate and offset advertising emissions.

Written By: Matilda Cox




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