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Bulzi delivers hyper targeting to DOOH advertisers by using mobile phone location data

By Nurlan Urazbaev,
Editor-in-Chief, Digital Signage Pulse

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Against the backdrop of the problems experienced by today’s advertising industry, digital-of-home (DOOH) advertising is emerging as the ‘super medium’ of the future, delivering real audiences and real return on the ad dollar. However, DOOH has not yet become an easy-to-buy, staple line item in media plans, largely because it’s still lacking standardized metrics and tools for buying and post-campaign reporting.

California-based company Bulzi is offering what could be a breakthrough in the DOOH buying process.

If advertisers were asked if they’d like to pay only for your DOOH ads that are played in front of their target audience, the reaction would probably be that it sounds too good to be true.

According to Bulzi’s CEO Brent McKay, this is exactly what his company has brought to the DOOH media: “We serve ads based on how many consumers matching the advertiser’s target audience profiles appear near a DOOH screen in real time. When the number of ‘desired’ audience members in the vicinity of a screen meets the advertiser’s requirement, the Bulzi system triggers the planned ad to be displayed on that screen. The cycle repeats every time this situation occurs at any DOOH screen in the network,” says McKay. 

Bulzi’s technology

How does Bulzi know who is in front of the screens? The company’s proprietary technology called LOCALīz uses anonymous mobile phone data from more than 250 million US phones. This privacy-safe system uses 100% anonymous data and can “see” over 90% of all mobile phones in proximity to the OOH screens in real time. As a result, Bulzī has a dynamic view of anonymous yet detailed characteristics of audiences exposed to the DOOH displays at all times.

Such ‘hyper targeting’ increases the value of every ad play manifold, compared to the ad plays based on conventional ‘blind’ playlists or ad loops, where ads are placed according to approximate demographic composition of the audience.

In the past couple of years several other companies have also announced the use of mobile phone location data for targeting DOOH audiences. However, according to Brent McKay, this approach presents certain challenges as far as the phone location accuracy is concerned. Following years of rigorous R&D, Bulzi has come up with a proprietary methodology that allows for the highest precision in tracking phone locations, compared to competition, he said.

Bulzi’s DOOH media inventory

Bulzi is partnered with major DOOH networks, which gives the company access to over 4 million DOOH screens across the US. Bulzi’s web-based platform enables advertisers to stay network-agnostic and target audiences with great precision, using a choice of 950 consumer attributes.

At the same time campaigns can achieve broader reach than with conventional network-centered planning, due to the fact that inventory is bought across all networks in the system.

It takes within a second for the Bulzi platform to identify the screens with the required concentration of target viewer profiles and to serve the appropriate ad to those screens.

Brent Mckay says that Bulzi has been developing the platform and partnerships needed to support this new capability for the last few years and is launching commercial production this quarter.

In 2015 Bulzi joined the Digital Place-based Advertising Association.

To learn more about Bulzi, visit:

Published on Thursday, October 8, 2015 at 5:45 PM

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