Since September, New York City’s waterways have been invaded by a single boat equipped with a 20 feet tall by 60 feet wide LED screen, broadcasting ads to passersby. The operation is courtesy of Ballyhoo Media, a company that launched an identical business in Miami 2016. The floating billboards immediately brought intrigue and some disdain from New Yorkers. (Disclosure: Digiday worked with Ballyhoo for an awards ceremony in November.)
But as of January, Ballyhoo is at war with NYC’s Law Department, and advertisers told Digiday they have mixed feelings about being associated.
“I find it over the line personally, and I’m not sure why, but yet I’m assaulted with banner ads all day and just accept it as a consumer,” said a media executive in out-of-home advertising, who requested anonymity since his clients have worked in this type of advertising.
Digiday received the pitch deck for Ballyhoo Media, which works with Pivot Media Ventures for its ad placements. A source told Digiday the ballpark pricing of a 30-second spot in a 2-minute loop on the boats is $55,000 in NYC and $35,000 in Miami for four weeks. A spokesperson for Pivot confirmed these numbers.