Driving to the office this morning, I passed one of your standard yellow school buses. But this one had a bit of a twist. Attached to the side of the bus was a poster promoting a company that provides tutoring in math and reading. Now transit advertising is not a new thing, but I have never seen it on a school bus. After all, unlike the typical mass transit bus, school buses are not designed with areas to feature ads. This poster had to be affixed toward the rear of the bus — and it was a bit wrinkled, because the bus side was not flat.
If this advertising execution does not sound particularly professional, it’s not. But I suspect it is going to be effective. Why? First, it is an extremely targeted message — reading and math tutoring – that is relevant only to parents of elementary age students. Second, the advertising message is being delivered in an extremely targeted manner — not necessarily to folks like me who notice the ad on the bus side in traffic, but to every parent who meets her child at the bus stop after school. Third, the advertising cost has to be low. It is “found money” for the school district that operates the buses, as those buses were not designed for this purpose — they are vehicles designed to deliver students, not advertising.
One of the principles of Underdog Advertising is “Focus! Focus! Focus!.” This is a great example of that principle. Focused message. Focused delivery to an very targeted prospect group. I don’t know what kind of results this advertising approach will generate, but I’m willing to bet it will pay out quite well.