Electronic Message Centers as an Investment in Advertising

Watchfire Signs Sales Manager Barry Pearman recently published a blog post at Digital Signage Today about the effectiveness of electronic signs when compared with other forms of advertising.

His advice: Don't overlook one of the most efficient and powerful marketing tools available. Electronic message centers can deliver results as well, or better, than traditional forms of advertising. Meanwhile, other forms of advertising are struggling:

  • Television – TV advertisers are facing the one-two punch of fewer viewers and the competing digital video recorder. More than one-third of viewers aged 18-44 say they watch less television than a year ago (SayMedia, December 2010). In addition, DVRs are in nearly 40 percent of homes, and 80 percent of users say they skip commercials while watching recorded programming (ABI Research, 2007).

  • Radio – AM/FM radio also has lost some of its luster. In just eight years, radio listenership has fallen 14 percent. Satellite radio, iPods, CD players and cellphones all rank higher than radio in listener preferences (Arbitron, "The Road Ahead," 2011).

  • Newspapers – Newspapers have been struggling for years. In just six months (October 2009 to March 2010), newspaper circulation dropped nearly 9 percent. Ten of the top 25 papers in the country lost more than 10 percent of their readers (New York Times, 2010). It's not surprising then that from 2006 to 2009, newspapers lost 42 percent of their marketing value (The New Yorker, 2009).

  • Yellow Pages – Consumers are letting their fingers do the walking and usually it's on a keyboard. The rise of Internet search engines has resulted in a 72 percent decline in calls from Yellow Page advertising, and a significantly higher cost per call, according to a 2009 call tracking study. In addition, the overall close rate for Yellow Page leads was only 9 percent, with one-third of all calls coming from non-customers, including robots or solicitations (Blue Corona DMW Call Study, 2009).

A recent study conducted by the National Signage Research and Education Conference shows that businesses with upgraded signage experience double digit increases in sales, transactions and profits, something that's difficult to achieve with traditional media. Businesses looking to improve their bottom line would be wise to consider an LED sign.

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