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Outdoor Advertising Industry Is Thriving

One of the hottest areas of the advertising arena these days is as far away from the glamour of the Internet as you can get: billboards.

Advertising revenue for the outdoor category, which includes billboards as well as ads on bus stops, train stations and other public places, were up more than 8% last year, according to the trade group Outdoor Association of America. (That growth rate outpaced other traditional forms of media such as network TV, radio and newspapers.)

There are several reasons why this billboard growth is occurring. Primarily they are not facing the same pressure from the Internet, or technology, as are other forms of advertising. There is no �mute� button, no �off� switch. You can�t change the channel.

Actually technology is an ally, as digital displays eliminate the biggest disadvantage to outdoor media right now...the old vinyl billboards that change every couple of weeks or even months.

With digital signage there are no limitations on how often and when advertisers can change their ads. (For the billboard companies, not only do they get premium rates for a digital sign, but the cost is lower to maintain the billboards once the amortization of deploying them is covered.)

Selected billboard advertising is available on trade around the country. And one trade exchange, Ric Zampatti�s The Barter Company in Atlanta (GA), has actual ownership of a billboard company.