A new advertising trend is gaining traction as ad agencies look for new ways to catch consumer’s attention. You may have heard of 21-year-old Andrew Fischer who sold a month’s worth of advertising space on his forehead on eBay for $37,375, but have you ever actually seen anyone participate in body advertising? The movement hasn’t fully caught in the US but our friends in Japan have found a way to cash in on a combination of social media and bodily advertising.

With over 3,000 women selling their thighs as advertising space in Japan, we may be looking at a future in Skinvertising. Any woman can enroll herself as long as she is over the age of eighteen and has more than twenty social media followers. The women are expected to wear a branded sticker for eight hours and upload at least two photos of their ad on Social Networking Sites. The going rate on “thigh space” is around $120 a day. Hidenori Atsumi, CEO of Advertising Agency WIT, who started the thigh crazed skinvertising says, “It’s an absolutely perfect place to put an advertisement because it’s what guys are eager to look at and girls are okay to expose.”

Brands and designers decorate our bodies with clothing, handbags, wallets, shoes, jewelry, sunglasses, phone cases and more. The human body is a canvas and every designer under the sun wants to stroke their brush. Why not let them decorate our skin too? What is the difference between instagramming a picture of your Michael Kors purse or your favorite designer’s logo pasted on your body?

There are a few brands or services that I have had such a pleasant experience with I would consider skinvertising for $120 a day, but it wouldn’t be on my thigh. A thigh sticker most certainly wouldn’t be appropriate for the work place and what does it say about your brand if you are willing to slap your name on young girl’s thighs? With the rate of social media adoption in our country, Skinverstising has a chance to move in, but I would like to see the stickers have varied locations. Why not a sticker we place on our our hand, the top of our foot, fingernails, forearm or ankle? Some business or services may market better on different parts of the body. I see a future in skinvertising, but I think it will look different in America.

Skinvertising will pose new challenges for advertising agencies and their research partners. We have some big questions to start thinking about if we see a skinvertising movement in the next few months or years. What makes the sticker resonant? And how do we measure the impact of the message? Does the location of the sticker change how we perceive a brand or service? Will skinvertising change how we use social media?

We could see walking billboards any day now, time to get our thinking caps on!

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