More Than Luck - Celtic Festival Fast Tracks Ad on Key-Ads’ Digital Billboard Within 48 Hours

​Key-Ads, Inc., a Dayton-based family-owned and operated outdoor advertising company since 1955, has installed its first digital billboard which was manufactured by Watchfire Digital Outdoor.

Right off the bat, the billboard expanded the company's customer base to include businesses that need to quickly update their advertisements or who need space for a specific event.

Nick Keyes, Jr., vice president, cites a recent example of the local Celtic festival organizers who had their advertisement up and running within 48 hours of requesting ad space. "We are thrilled with the flexibility of this digital billboard. It has allowed us to offer our customers a more personalized experience and provides us greater short-term sales potential."   

From the moment the board went live, Key-Ads began receiving tremendous feedback…primarily from people calling in to secure ad space, but also from others who simply wanted to share how impressive the board is.

Because this was Key-Ads' first digital billboard, the company knew it could use help working closely with city planning officials to ensure the board would blend well with the existing structures and not impede surrounding properties. Watchfire proved to be an integral part of this process.  "Before we even had secured a permit or committed to purchasing their board, Watchfire came to Dayton to help us run a light study at night to ensure that the lights from the billboard would not have an adverse effect on the surrounding areas," said company president, Nick Keyes, Sr. "The entire Watchfire team-from sales and engineering to installation-worked just as hard as we did without any guarantees. They went above and beyond anyone else we've ever done business with and helped make this installation a huge success."

Key-Ads also sees the high visibility of the billboard as an opportunity to give back to the Dayton community by working with local authorities to post Amber Alerts. "Going digital has been a great decision for our company. We won't look any further than Watchfire when we find our next digital location," said Keyes, Sr.

Key-Ads has been in business for more than 50 years and operates billboards in Ohio, Indiana and Kentucky. The True 16mm 22'x18' billboard, termed the Dayton Gateway Feature, is located on state route 35, the main artery connecting the city of Dayton with the southern and eastern suburbs. When the owners secured such a high profile location, they knew that it was prime for something truly unique.  

After visiting the Watchfire manufacturing plant in Danville, Ill., the Keyes family knew they had found the best digital billboard in the industry. "I was sold on the quality of Watchfire's product," said Keyes, Jr. "After hearing about their reputation from others in the industry and touring their plant, I was convinced that they build a great board, and that they would be willing and able to troubleshoot any issues that might arise during the installation process and beyond. I was particularly impressed with the technology they use to protect the LEDs from weather…that's an important issue in our business."

Among other pixel pitch boards, Watchfire Digital Outdoor produces the True-16mm-which packs 1,020 LEDs into every square foot-and is capable of producing 281 trillion colors, the most in the industry. It is the only manufacturer that fully encapsulates the LED module in a thick bed of silicone gel, which enables the LED boards to operate in extreme weather conditions: more than 180 days completely submerged in water, 60 days in a salt-spray chamber, and temperatures ranging from -40° F to 120° F. In areas where heat and humidity are both high, the silicone gel encapsulation protects the boards from humidity and moisture, greatly improving projected reliability. All Watchfire boards feature unique extruded aluminum cabinetry that comply with 2006 IBC codes and a streamlined electronics design that improves operation and simplifies maintenance. Watchfire's warranty, lead-times, customer support, and no-fee software are considered to be the best in the industry.

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