Whether lighthearted and playful, or confrontational and political, Europe carries out strong mobile billboards that speak to what’s going on in their current climate. In 2019, the European country in the advertising lead is the UK, while Russia, Turkey, and Germany follow suit. There are plenty of reasons why mobile billboards work in the European market, but outdoor advertising here has also been faced with negative reception from consumers. Because Europe is known to be more architectural, restorative of historic art, and extremely accessible on foot, Europeans may have a hard time digesting the market that is mobile billboards. At the same time, some mobile billboards can speak to politically charged people and give them voting incentive to make culturally favored decisions for their economy.
Europe isn’t limited to truckside advertising. For the most part, mobile billboards take place on local bikes serving promotions for new products or businesses. In this blog post, we’re going to take a look at a popular UK advertising and media provider, the way Promobikes stand in for mobile billboards, how Hungary’s government uses mobile billboards to speak out, and the way Berliners feel about billboard advertising. Dorothy, we’re not in North American anymore.
Gorilla Media UK
Because the UK is at the head of advertising in Europe, and they’re slamming out campaign after campaign, it’s worth it to learn about a mobile billboard company that they enjoy doing business with. Gorilla Media UK uses mobile advertising vans, advertising bikes, and advertising trailers that move across the UK to deliver a flexibility of messages. They use a media tracking system to give their clients the present location of the vehicle, and a street-level view of the vehicle on their website. Gorilla Media’s AdVan drivers and AdBike riders will also take GeoTime digital photos for campaign analysis and client transparency.
On top of offering mobile billboards on vehicles and bikes, Gorilla Media hires AdWalkers in branded uniforms and double-sided banner signage to deliver messages on the streets. Their AdVans are also capable of using digital displays to best apply an advertiser’s intended meaning. Some of their big name clients included McDonald’s, IKEA, BBC, National Trust, and Hilton. Gorilla Media gives the UK a fresh taste of mobile billboarding.
The Promobike Phenomena
Prominent in European hotspots, especially in France and Italy, Promobikes serve direct mobile billboard advertising to people outdoors. Delivering the lowest cost per thousand impressions, Promobikes are an advertising tool doubling as a convenient way to get around. They’re targeted particularly at residential, business, youth, tourist, and transient audiences daily. Promobikes are completely human-powered and maneuverable, making it easy for riders to get in exercise while participating in a little marketing. Their designs include a 6 sheet lightbox, which has a back-lighting component and custom designed LED lighting system. They also have high performance sound systems that can attract people within an 80 meter radius. Some of their clients include H&M, Volkswagen, Nokia, and Crocs. Promobikes are uniquely designed to spread out-of-home messages on a comfortable seat ready to ride.
Advantages of Promobikes
– they’re extremely environmentally friendly; they’re mobile billboards not running on gas; peddling is positive
– brings people closer to the point of sales; messages appear closer on the street
– they work amazing in pedestrian areas of high traffic and volume
– they use the combination of both audio and visual
– they can be Bluetooth and GPS enabled to keep the messaging on track
Political Mobile Billboards in Hungary
Last year, Hungary fastened a directly targeted message to voters with supposed misinformation on the sides of a van parked outside the Prime Minister’s Office. A photo of Guy Verhofstadt, the leader of the Alliance of Liberals and Democrats for Europe, is seen being mocked for a statement he made during a press conference. In order to defend themselves from the backlash of Hungary Prime Minister Victor Orban’s anti-immigration policies, their government is using political propaganda to distract people from real issues of racism. This conversation-starting mobile billboard traveled around Hungary and went to Brussels, with the hopes that people will follow a biased viewpoint. However not necessarily an effective mobile billboard, it’s interesting to see how parts of Europe are using this advertising machine to combat opposing political parties and leaders.
Berlin Not Happy About Billboard Messages
Though not necessarily focusing on mobile billboards, it’s fascinating to hear feedback from how a part of Europe is reacting to the penetration of outdoor advertising. In particular, a group of activists in Berlin launched a campaign last year to limit the proliferation of billboard advertising and ban it from kindergartens, schools, and universities entirely. One of the major reasons for this is that people signing the petition felt like their lives were ruled by an outdoor infomercial, and that product and service advertising is repetitive and invasive- let alone sexist and derogatory at times.
Petition participants of Berlin see their city as colorful and diverse, and that a reduction in public advertising would potentially increase the city’s value. These Berliners still believe in public ads highlighting special events and services that the city promotes, however they’re not interested in seeing commercial messages. Their center-left government has been slightly open to this idea, but still realizes the city needs the income from public advertisers to maintain the costs of some of their public spaces. Currently, the petition still needs almost 20,000 more signatures in order for the state parliament to assess the plan and make comments on it.
After taking a peek at a top mobile billboard advertising service in the UK, seeing how Promobikes work, briefly touching on a political Hungary mobile billboard, and seeing Berlin’s stance on being somewhat anti-billboard, it’s certifiably European to go to many different lengths in order to get a message across. All in all, Europe reinvents consumer interest in mobile billboards.