Do Billboard Trucks Offer A Great Alternative For Advertisers?
Billboard trucks and the changes in advertising.
Coronavirus outbreak and the consequences for Out-Of-Home Advertising
Since the spread of the deadly coronavirus which began in China assumed a menacing global sweep, economies around the world – both big and small – have been counting losses in billions of dollars. Yet, another devastating blow came, with the fall of the oil market, hitting already fragile economies. The business world bears the major brunt in this economic crisis. And one aspect that has been so badly hit is the advertising industry. Even more unfortunate is the out-of-home (OOH) advertising media because public places like Times Square and Piccadilly Circus, which used to be host to massive billboards and sign adverts, have all been deserted, and still the coast isn’t clear yet.
If expert analysis and market forecasts so far are anything to go by, OOH advertising agencies will need to rethink their strategies before the damage deteriorates to them bleeding clients too. According to a survey conducted by the Interactive Advertising Bureau, it is believed that traditional out-of-home advertising is expected to suffer (Forbes) an estimated ad spend decline of 51% for March and April and a decline of 41% for May and June. In the revised March
2020 Ad Forecast released by MAGNA, a company which provides strategic investment and media intelligence it is expected that total linear ads (National and Local TV, Radio, Print, and OOH) sales will decline by -12%. OOH, and print media are expected to take a hit of -12% and -25% respectively. If the lockdown should extend beyond the April 30, the blow might be below the belt because current realities will worsen.
Billboard trucks used to work well
Notably, digital advertising platforms are ahead of trucks in terms of ad spend, but the trucks came earlier. For a long time, the vehicles presented a cheaper option for businesses to get their message to the consumers. Interestingly, businesses only need to pay a one-time cost to wrap ads on the vehicles. Also, companies that have their cars find it easy to equip them with the ads hence cutting down on costs.
Interestingly, mobile trucks offer a unique space for a message for as long as possible. As the truck traverses densely populated urban cities to the countryside, many people get to interact with the ad. This excellent visibility increases the impact and impression the ad generates. Interestingly, advertisers ensure that billboard trucks are more effective by designing captivating ads. Often, trucks are on the move. Therefore, the target audience needs something that will capture their imagination in under a minute.
Advertising Trucks will lose the effectiveness
Nonetheless, this advertising avenue can be expensive, especially if compared to alternatives like in-the-hand marketing. Equipping trucks with the wrapping that carries the advert comes with a steep upfront cost. Depending on the scale of the ad campaign, designing and installing ads could gobble a lot of money. Besides, some wraps could begin aging faster than anticipated. As such, the cost for re-equipping of the truck could dig deep into the business’ profits.
Interestingly, trucks may not always be the best alternative for businesses that are focused on a favorable return on interest. Usually, trucks move from one place to another, particularly in areas with high population density. However, there is no guarantee that the message will reach the targeted audience. Specific targeting of ads using trucks is difficult because trucks cannot isolate a particular section of consumers on a highway. The lack of accurate targeting of ads implies that impressions and conversion rates are low for this type of advertising. Eventually, trucks may not offer a great alternative compared to other advertising options that put the message in the hands of the audience.
The after-effect of this development will, of course, be an unavoidable reduction in patronage for the outdoor advertising companies. These media companies may count their losses for months after. Advertising truck companies will eventually have to sit it out with the hope that they can still reclaim their market share in the end. However, smaller businesses and other brands that depended on their strategic displays to market their brands may not be so patient. Just as major clients like hoteliers, airlines, and cinemas are on pause mode, smaller brands are quickly pulling away and leveraging alternative media and in-home advertising to preach their brands.
Truck Advertising will be replaced by In-Home Ads
Recently the Interactive Advertising Bureau surveyed nearly 400 media buyers and brands. The results were surprising: 74% think the coronavirus pandemic will have a larger impact on their advertising spend than the 2008 financial crisis. According to the President of Interactive Advertising Bureau, David Cohen, “Typically marketers will press pause for a moment, take a breath, assess the situation, replay and reevaluate.”