Nov 08, 2000
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Many consumer site marketers these days are under pressure to find methods beyond the banner to drive traffic to their sites. Are there options beyond same-old, same-old TV, radio, direct mail and print? You bet! Stacy Sibley, Director of Media Services at Wilkins Media Company is one of the country's top experts on what they call "out of home media." We contacted Sibley for her top 10 picks for women's Web sites:
1. Dry Cleaning
You can put your ad on the plastic covering clothes, on paper of the hangers, hang a coupon around the hanger and even hang a poster at the dry cleaners. We like this choice because you can target by zip code.
2. Mall Advertising
Most malls have Internet kiosks. You can put your ad on the outside of the kiosk, or have your banner on the homepage. There's also Mall TV in foodcourts. We think this is a natural to direct weary shoppers to your Web site when they're already sick of the Christmas rush at brick and mortars!
Frankly we don't know why more advertisers don't take advantage of ATMs. You can put your ad on the screen or have a printed coupon pop out with customer's money. You can also advertise on the receipt. This can't be precisely targeted to women, but we like it too much to leave it out.
4. Health Clubs
Health clubs are eager to place advertisers posters in their locker rooms. Sibley says, "If I told you how many media kits I get a day on this, you'd probably die. Just to keep on top of them is crazy!" Many Stairmasters now have video monitors showing 30-minute loops with ads on health-related topics. You can also just leave stuff at the front desk. (Another great place for coupons.)
5. Diaper-Changing Tables in Public Restrooms
Some baby changing tables have posters hung over them, others show posters when you lift the lid. You can select by city. That's pretty targeted!
6. Skating and Roller Rinks
Think how many moms wait weary hours while their kids twirl about. You can place posters at the rinks and arrange for them to hand out coupons to all adult visitors.
7. Postcards in Racks
A lot of sites, such as Elle.com, targeting women place postcards in public racks in bars and restaurants. You can also target coffee shops and bookstores.
8. Amusement Parks
Some parks offer ad spots on their turnstyles. Others will do handouts as families enter the park. We figure a better time might be when they are leaving. Sibley said it's almost certainly possible. You can also sponsor a discounted night at the amusement park and get your branding all over the place.
9. Buses and Bus Shelters
Here's the funny thing, ads on bus shelters and buses aren't so much aimed at people who ride buses as they are aimed at neighborhood residents and local office workers who see them at eye level as they're walking by. This can sometimes be a more upscale crowd than the folks on the bus. You can rotate ads every 30 days and get very targeted as to neighborhoods.
Last but not least, Sibley recommended billboards, but she said, "Seattle is sold out the majority of the time, and I wouldn't recommend one in New York although I might recommend a painted wall. For billboards on San Francisco's Highway 101 they want $30-$40K and up a month, so there I would look at alternatives like a barge." According to Sibley you should allow almost three months to get a billboard ad up, including time for media buying, waiting for your chosen positions to become available and about 20-25 days for creative and production.
Sibley's creative tips for billboards are, "The three Bs. Be bold, be bright, be clear. You only have a few seconds to catch someone's attention." Unless of course you're in a spot that's famous for traffic jams.
Editor's Note: Want to learn more about your out-of-home options? Sibley has offered a free consultation for any eMarketingtoHer.com readers who contact her. Just email
firstname.lastname@example.org to set up a time to chat.