Launched last November, with backing from Diageo, Translucis now has a network of plasma screens in more than 280 independent bars and brewery-owned venues in urban areas stretching from Torquay to Aberdeen.
About 50% of airtime on the silent screens is devoted to programming, which typically takes the form of two-minute videos which will appeal to the target 18 to 24-year-old audience that fills UK nightspots, with travelogues, trivia lists or extreme sports features appearing.
The programming is also organized according to the course of a typical night out, with fashion and lifestyle editorial featuring early in the evening when people feel slightly self conscious and clubby visuals hitting the screens later.
Translucis has just announced that it can deliver one million impacts a week and, with about 50 new units being installed at any time, this figure is sure to keep climbing.
It has also launched a brand name, Magnetic, to be carried on the screens. The company employs about 50 people, including people who work on the technical elements of plasma screen business, and a team of 10 handles media sales.
The team is led by sales director Ian Davis, who recently joined from TSMS. It also sells across Yates's Wine Lodges' own plasma screen network and Mr Qs' video jukeboxes.
The sales personnel come from a variety of backgrounds, including GWR, Sunday Business, Teletext and Cabal.
"A broad mix of experience was what I was looking for when I put the team together," says media director Tony Long. "This is a new medium which falls between conventional ideas. The broad range of backgrounds mean we come at a pitch from a number of angles."
Clients sales director Mark Grice and his team of two work with the drink companies, such as Bacardi Breezer, Smirnoff, Baileys, Guinness and Red Square. They speak to everyone - from brand managers to the people responsible for point-of-sale activity - to ensure they know that Translucis screens are a perfect way to target
consumers while they're deciding what tipple to get in next.
Translucis also believes the screens are perfect for lifestyle and youth brands to target the elusive 18 to 24-year-old age group and this is where group account director Zoë Robinson's four-strong team comes into play. They take Translucis' proposition to the agencies and have dealt with all the main players, winning advertisers including Glamour and Reebok.
These sales execs must love their job, as Long says they often drink in pubs where Translucis screens are installed. Indeed, an important part of the pitching process is taking clients out at night to show them the screens at work.
"We don't have to try hard to sell to the agencies, as they're looking at the screens and they're seeing others looking at them," says Long. "People don't feel they're being pressurized as we're just having a few drinks."
However, if the Hanover Square-based team has had enough of plasma for the day, it might head to the Duke of York or the Pitcher and Piano.
Ian Davis, sales director; Tony Long, media director; Mark Grice, client sales director; Zoë Robinson, group account director; Rob Sawyer, Clodagh Walsh, Lee Gerlis, Nairn Foster, account managers.
This article was first published on Media Week