Nova claims media first with credit card tapping technology

In what the radio network claims to be a media first for Australia, Nova FM has used near-field communication technology in the latest installment of its ‘Live Life Nova’ campaign.

By tapping their mobile phones against a Nova billboard, the technology – which is increasingly being used by credit card firms – will enable people to tune in to the station.

The billboards will be positioned around Sydney and Melbourne by Nova’s media agency, UM, and outdoor firm JC Decaux.

The agency’s national head of digital, Ashley Brown, said of the technology: “It creates a direct connection between their outdoor media and the digital world. Unlike QR codes or Bluetooth, NFC allows for hassle free and instantaneous communication and information transfer between a brand and a consumer.”

He added that while the penetration of NFC may be low, the potential for advertisers was “enormous”.

The NFC-enabled billboards goes live on Wednesday.

The ‘Live Life Nova’ campaign launched at the beginning of the year.



  1. les wood
    11 Jul 11
    5:06 pm

  2. Are there any phones out at the moment with NFC?

  3. Phone junky
    11 Jul 11
    5:23 pm

  4. Yup, there’s the Google Nexus S, most new Nokia’s, the Samsung Galaxy S II and a few others.

  5. Leslie
    11 Jul 11
    5:24 pm

  6. Wait. What? NFC penetration isn’t just low, it’s practically non-existant; so in what possible way is the potential “enormous”?

  7. Geordie
    11 Jul 11
    5:50 pm

  8. Surely the lower the penetration the higher the potential?

  9. wisebeyondyears
    11 Jul 11
    6:08 pm

  10. this is just about as good as the CBA iphone app you needed to get to see the 3D press ad tell you about the home loan iphone app. Nope, not as good actually

  11. Bill
    11 Jul 11
    6:21 pm

  12. Not really a new idea, back in circa 2005 you could download a Gorillaz single from a billboard using Bluetooth.

  13. nickatnights
    11 Jul 11
    6:23 pm

  14. AM stereo had low penetration when it was launched in 1984.

  15. Rich
    11 Jul 11
    6:33 pm

  16. Its only a first because everyone with half a brain will wait till people actually have phones that can use it.

  17. dorlene
    11 Jul 11
    7:19 pm

  18. Our media agency tried this on us. Hah!!!

  19. Pfft
    11 Jul 11
    7:33 pm

  20. So you now need a special gizmo enabled phone and a bus shelter to listen to Nova… and you still get more than two ads in a row. Fail.

  21. Anon
    11 Jul 11
    7:49 pm

  22. That’s what she said.

  23. Jon
    12 Jul 11
    10:41 am

  24. … or if I wanted, I could just go to 96.9 – or whatever it is in other cities. Not that hard and probably quicker than walking up to a billboard and tapping it.

  25. Gerald
    12 Jul 11
    12:03 pm

  26. the execution is just poor, is all

  27. nickatnights
    12 Jul 11
    12:21 pm

  28. So to listen to Nova do I now need a bus shelter? That is really inconvenient. I think I will stick with 2Day FM.

  29. nickatnights
    12 Jul 11
    1:32 pm

  30. Plus I think bus shelters are under rated. Sometimes I’m in awe of the opportunity there is to run ads on the side of them. They would do 2 things: make you want to buy the product that’s advertised and also offer an important wind break in these chilly winter months

  31. nickatnights
    12 Jul 11
    1:46 pm

  32. Also I’m not sure I understand. How does the radio go into my phone if I tap it on the bus shelter? Is there a getto blaster hidden somewhere in the glassy section?
    It would be cool if a radio DJ hung out at every bus shelter and played Gaga to the travellin’ peeps
    That would be innovation – ative

  33. therealnickatnights
    12 Jul 11
    3:00 pm

  34. What would actually be better is if Sydney Buses introduced a sytem where if you tapped your phone on the bus shelter it would turn into a bus.

    I just tapped my phone onto the Bourke Street bike lane and it turned into Alan Jones.

    I also just tapped my phone onto a Commonwealth Bank branch and I was charged a fee.

  35. Jess
    12 Jul 11
    4:18 pm

  36. Look forward to seeing the case study from either Nova or JC Decaux on how effective this campaign was… Be sure to PR that too.

  37. Dave C
    12 Jul 11
    6:19 pm

  38. I think this is really cool. Could be used also for posters about movies. Tap the poster and the movie trailer would auto play on your smartphone. Great!