Blog Post

Former Clear Channel Digital Head Harrison Tries A New Medium: Billboards

Evan Harrison is changing frequencies after a career in music and digital that spans lengthy stays at *Clear Channel* Radio, where he was president of digital until March, AOL (NYSE: AOL) and BMG. Harrison’s new gig, in a move likely to surprise some: chief creative officer for out-of-home agency Van Wagner Communications.

In the combo biz dev and marketing role designed for him, Harrison will be responsible for spearheading “creative marketing approaches” across Van Wagner’s businesses, from premium billboards in Times Square and other top markets to sports and aerial. He’ll also be looking for potential expansion into other area. He’ll report to CEO Richard Schaps.

Harrison told paidContent he spoke with a number of large companies and looked at some VC-backed opportunities — “all the typical jobs you might imagine me taking” — but was struck by the potential of working for an established but nimble private company interested in growth. “I have never seen myself as digital only or music only,” Harrison said. He looks at billboards today with new technology and the possibilities of interactivity via QR codes or other means and sees something that compares to radio when he joined Clear Channel (OTCBB: CCMO).

During six-plus years at Clear Channel, Harrison took the radio chain into online streaming with iheartradio and then into cross-platform apps downloaded more than 25 million times.

That expertise combined with Van Wagner’s current interests, which include in-stadium deals across the NBA, NCAA and MLB, and kiosks, could be particularly interesting.