OOH Advertising Brings Justice to Missing Persons Cases
OOH advertising has the ability to bring awareness to a number of things, and missing person cases are one of them. You’ve heard of the classic picture of a missing kid on the side of milk cartons, but billboards can do more than their predecessors. Not many people are aware of Crime Stoppers or the many hotlines available to receive tips or information to help find missing people, so using billboards and other OOH advertising tools can help spread the message of these organizations. This strengthened awareness can make sweeping changes in the effectiveness of OOH ads for missing persons cases. With more awareness, more tips can be offered up, meaning more clues for the police to use in their investigations.
How Sex Trafficking Can Be Minimized By Awareness
Sex trafficking is one of the many criminal enterprises operating underground and sex traffickers are responsible for kidnapping many young girls each year. It involves kidnapping men and women, usually younger in age, and selling them off as slaves or into brothels to work. Criminals who participate in the despicable act of sex trafficking, “…often target people who are poor, vulnerable, living in an unsafe situation, or searching for a better life.” Both younger girls and younger boys are victims of kidnapping and sex trafficking on a yearly basis. OOH advertising has the potential to reach out to the public in a big and effective way. As much as billboards are seen as business tools, their general usage is often overlooked. Billboards can be used for more than just companies looking to sell a product. They are used for a variety of things such as for activism, elections and, in this case, law enforcement. OOH is capable of bringing more attention to missing person’s cases. By using billboards to advertise missing person cases, more people can be included in the search, which means less work and stress for law enforcement, who are responsible for handling over 100,000 missing person cases each year.
YourCall Minnesota and the Fight Against Sex Trafficking
Many companies and organizations are using the power they have to participate in the apprehension of criminals like sex traffickers. YourCall Minnesota is a public service campaign created by various law enforcement organizations to raise awareness about the prevalence of sex trafficking and how to increase public reports of sex trafficking. One of the top locations in the U.S for child sex trafficking is Minneapolis. The government has created a Safe Harbor Law to provide support for victims of sex trafficking, but more still needs to be done to protect others from the same grotesque situation. YourCall Minnesota works to gather tips on missing people from the public through their hotline. They also organize billboards and mobile truck advertising in order to garnish more attention for their cause. YourCall Minnesota is one of many organizations working with OOH advertising in order to help with missing persons investigations and decrease sex trafficking cases.
OOH Advertising and its Impact on Criminal Investigations
Crime never takes a vacation. As much as we don’t involve ourselves in law enforcement cases and often delegate it to trained professionals like police officers, the public is capable of helping with these cases. Billboards are useful for law enforcement because they can spread the word quicker than other methods of advertising. DOOH such as digital billboards are also effective at grabbing people’s attention on the streets. Commissioner of Tobago Police Gary Griffith says, “This (billboard advertising) can be an effective way to assist the TTPS to bring some degree of closure. Not just to find individuals who did not want to be found, but in cases where someone was abducted, taken in a vehicle then someone may have seen that photo of the individual and can bring it to the attention of the police.” OOH ads are great for identifying missing people because they are posted in public, where missing people could be spotted by pedestrians. If a person sees a billboard with the victim’s face posted on it, they are more likely to identify that person in public because they are more aware of their surroundings, unlike with online ads.
How You Can Join the Search
With the help of OOH advertising, missing persons can hopefully be found quicker than using other means of advertising, and can spread the word about important systems put in place to identify the locations of missing people. Mobile truck advertising can be a tool to spread awareness about important issues such as sex trafficking, which is why organizations interested in fighting against crime should consider investing in truck advertising and billboards to heighten interest in their cause. Families deserve to have closure on these cases, and it’s up to the public to assist in the identification and rescue of missing people. If more awareness is put on missing people through OOH advertising, more justice can be brought to the missing people and victims of heinous criminal enterprises like sex trafficking.