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Advertising Pro Takes Helm At New AMI MegaNet Division

Posted On: 9/2/2008

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GRAND RAPIDS, MI -- On-premise advertising expert Mike Nickerson has joined the executive teams of AMI Entertainment and its sister company Merit Entertainment, which have formed a new division to oversee promotions running on jukeboxes and countertop videogames. Nickerson will head that division, called AMI MegaNet, as vice-president of advertising.

AMI MegaNet is described as a place-based media service that will build on the strengths of two established and growing out-of-home entertainment networks. "AMI MegaNet will leverage Merit and AMI's positions as market leaders in coin-op entertainment by delivering relevant advertising messages directly to patrons while they play," Nickerson said.

In his new role, Nickerson will be responsible for the development and marketing of AMI MegaNet's out-of-home advertising network. He will report to Mike Maas, president and chief executive officer of both AMI and Merit.

Nickerson has spent nearly 20 years in marketing, focusing on the in-bar space. He launched his media career as a DJ and promotions director at WROO-FM in Jacksonville, FL, and followed with traditional advertising, event marketing, entertainment sponsorship, and retail and trade promotions. A native of Key West, FL, Nickerson has worked for agencies in Chicago, Denver and New York City.

His client background in the beverage alcohol category includes top brands, from Budweiser, Coors Light, Blue Moon, Killians Irish Red and Corona to Partida Tequila, Smirnoff Ice, Jim Beam and Absolut. He's also worked with premium non-alcohol products, including 7UP, Coca-Cola, General Mills, Hyundai, Motorola, Kellogg, Radio Shack, RJ Reynolds and Sony.

According to Nickerson, AMI MegaNet offers the best features of digital networking for the distribution of interactive, content-rich advertising to consumers in fun tavern and bar environments. It also introduces a new revenue stream for operators offering AMI music and online Merit games to their location, he underscored.

"The advertising network's on-premise reach has great potential because it accesses an installed base consisting of both jukeboxes and videogame terminals, compared with in-bar promotional programs currently limited to jukeboxes only," he told VT.

"The addition of countertop videogames means that we can deliver more impressions to our clients than just jukeboxes alone because consumers spend a greater amount of time on average interacting with a game," he observed. "And longer time at the screen means greater ad frequency, which leads to better ad retention for the advertiser."