Archive for Truck Side Advertising – main
TruckSide advertising has been around for years, but a new twist aims to take
advantage of the potentially hundreds of thousands of blank TruckSides roaming
the roads of America.
The old twist was simply an extension of a company’s on-premise
advertising…Furniture trucks hauling chairs and tables across town with a photo
of their goods emblazoned on the side, or the local television station cruising
for photo ops with their logo plastered on the side.
Of course truckers have always had a hankering for highly stylized and
personal graphics on the doors of their cabs, usually lettered by a unique breed
of extremely talented artists.
That’s old school. There’s nothing wrong with old school, but the new school
envisions big bucks selling graphics on the sides of trucks that don’t have
direct affiliation with the companies who advertise on the side of them.
These days, XYZ Trucking Co. hauling lobsters, or whatever the catch of the
day might be, from Cape Cod to Boston, could advertise been.
“People see TruckSide advertising as an additional revenue source, especially
when freight hauling is down because the economy is down overall”, says Doug
Scott, news production editor of Transport Topics. A trucking publication that
recently ran an article about TruckSide advertising. “It is growing in
importance, you will see a lot more of the owner/operators, – the small guys or
small fleets – doing it”.
The parties that benefit from TruckSide advertising include the trucking
companies, advertising agencies, media companies that rent the sides of the
trucks, the advertiser and , last but not least, sign and graphic companies.
“One tractor-trailer company could have 30,000 vehicles – you add that up and
the amount of square footage across the country is phenomenal.” Says Jack Berry,
founder of PrintCom, a grand format digital printer based in Raleigh, N.C. “If
they qualify it, quantify it and get some leaders to adopt it, I will retire
Qualifications and quantification of the effectiveness of TruckSide
advertising is showing hopeful early results. The Traffic Audit Bureau (TAB),which
audits and authenticates the circulation, or number of impressions, for
out-of-home advertising, like billboards, has devised a system known as MARG for
tracking TruckSide advertising effectiveness.
The MARG System basically marries information from a Global Positioning
System (GPS) that tracks a truck’s movements every 2 minutes with traffic data
from the federal government’s Highway Performance Monitoring System (HPMS) to
audit the circulation of a particular moving ad.
“The system was in development for over 2 years and we introduced it in
December of 1999, so the system is out there right now and people are in the
process of getting the GPS leads in,” says Larry Hennessy Vice President and
General Manager of the TAB.
Hennessy, says that initial test results from Chicago showed about
40,000-50,000 impressions per day for a McDonald’s ad that ran for 12 weeks on 3
trucks, either on the interstate near the city or closer to the center of town,
which averaged more impressions.
“I don’t know if it is a direct comparison (to billboards) because the media
is very different, says Hennessy,. “It is real easy to count how many people see
a billboard. With trucks in motion it’s much more complicated, but the numbers
generated in Chicago are relatively equivalent what outdoor advertising is doing
Tests in other major metropolitan markets, like Atlanta and San Francisco,
have shown similar results. Things are definitely looking up for the inner metro
markets, where delivery trucks and such make their rounds within the city
“One of the phenomena we’ve seen in the last couple of years is outdoor media
mixes, or optimization, where instead of buying just posters and bulletins,
advertisers are seeing the opportunity of reaching consumers in micro or niche
markets where they can reach consumers during part of their daily life cycle,”
says Steven Freitas, Chief Marketing Officer of the Outdoor Advertising Assoc.
of America (OAAA), “They’re seeing opportunities to reach them in various
places, and one of the products they’re definitely considering and using is
Freitas adds that the OAAA hopes to start compiling national circulation
figures, with numbers of the top 25 metro markets within a year.
This niche marketing is not restricted to urban areas – the Texas Lottery has
had success on the open road, but so far, excluding the Texas Lottery, it’s the
only tracked example of TruckSide advertising.
“We do it a little differently for the Texas Lottery program – we lease the
trailers ourselves and sublease them to the company so that we can control the
vehicle”, says George Gearner, Chairman/CEO of Minneapolis -based Fleet
Advertising Media Group (FAMG), which sells TruckSide media packages to
advertisers. Gearner is also first chairman of the TruckSide Advertising Council
(TACA), an advocacy group for TruckSide advertising.
“All of the trucks have LED digits on the sides of them that display the
current jackpot of the Texas Lottery. We can access those trailers from the
Internet and change the digits using GPS”, says Gearner.
Initial results from the Texas Lottery campaign have also been positive.
Though the trucks aren’t blazing the coveted inner urban trails (however, they
travel within 50 miles of the central business district), they’re traveling to
and stopping at the places people buy lottery tickets.
This speaks to the targeted niche marketing that the advertising industry has
been moving toward for some time with alternative media forms, like TruckSide
“About a year ago, Tide wanted to reach people whey they might be spilling
food on their clothes, so they put Tide ads on paper napkins in diners and
restaurants. It didn’t matter what the CPM was, what mattered was that they
wanted to reach diners eating. In many regards, TruckSide is the same way, ”
says OAAA”s Freitas.
TruckSide advertising is not without its roadblocks as a number of factors
need to be overcome in order to fully explain the possibilities. As mentioned
earlier, quantification and qualification of the numbers is one, while the
specter of regulation is another.
“There are not a lot of regulations pertaining to TruckSide advertising, per
se, but because it is becoming more prevalent very quickly, a lot of cities are
starting to take a look at TruckSide advertising. There are some cities -
specifically New York, San Francisco and Boston – which have taken that step and
are aggressively looking at regulatory controls. There is some litigation in
those cities, because there are aspects within the city laws where they are
questioning whether it’s legal to carry signs on trucks. They’re talking about a
significant reduction or elimination with those cities, so some of the companies
involved in those cities are already in court dealing with those types of legal
issues and free speech.”
However, regulation thus far applies mostly to mobile billboards, trucks that
are designed to be moving billboards – particularly for special events like
conventions – and they usually don’t carry deliveries.
“Any time that the government sees an opportunity to get involved in
business, they do. However, we have been very careful nopt to violate any of the
federal or state department of transportation regulations. The trucking company
knows what the rules and regulations are, and we rely on the”, says Gearner.
There already has been a precedent of sorts set by the fact that metro busses
have been carrying ads on them for years. It would be difficult to override that
precedent and not allow trucking companies to sell ads on the sides of their
For the time being and for the most part, regulation is a non-issue and the
time is ripe for sign and graphics companies to put together advertising
packages for trucking companies.
Article Source: http://www.mobileadgroup.com/News/news-SB-0401.html