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IHAVEANIDEA.ORG > ask jancy >  Ads on a hot tin roof

Ads on a hot tin roof

The greatest number of unused ‘billboards’ in any city are blank rooftops. If you were to draw a 5 mile radius around any airport you would clearly be in view of the surrounding rooftops. This means thousands of people every day, in every major city, look out airplane windows at blank billboards! In a time when every conceivable space is converted to profit (including above the urinals in some restrooms!), hockey boards, stair risers, etc. I wonder why this possibility has not been explored. It seems to me these ads could either be a deluxe permanent display for a given product (eg Pepsi) or a shorter term project for special events (eg The Royal Winter Fair). The concept would be to lease the roof from the building owner and sell the space to advertisers. The options could include either nighttime illumination or a more limited and less expensive unlit daytime exposure only. In this day of heated roadways and solar panels, the challenge of melting the elements can be met and if the ads were elevated (say 12 inches above the surface) they would overcome such interference.
On some occasions (eg Atlanta) I have noticed individual businesses that have painted their names on their roofs. in such instances there is a clear ‘message to the sky’ that is clearly communicated.
Anyway, I am curious to hear your reply. If this is doorknob thinking I know you will give it to me straight!!!! On the other hand, who could be our first customer? Mississauga is loaded with flat roof buildings!

intro Ads on a hot tin roofYour idea would be best directed at an outdoor company—Astral Media or Pattison Outdoor come to mind in our market. Roof space has been used for messages the odd time, with an idea leading to a one-time deal with that building. You’re right—today messages can turn up virtually on any surface. Buildings have long ago sold their wall space as paid outdoor space. Why not roofs? There’s still very limited viewing of that space and we’d assume that’s the simple reason it hasn’t been routinely for sale. But hey—try for an interview with a senior executive at one of those companies and see how far you get.

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About Jancy

'Jancy' is Janet Kestin and Nancy Vonk, Co-Founders of Swim, a unique “creative leadership training lab for advertising creatives and marketers.” Prior to Swim, Jancy was globally renowned as the Co-Chief Creative Officers of Ogilvy & Mather Toronto, a position they held for thirteen of the twenty years they were a creative duo at the agency. Over the years they've racked up Cannes Lions, Clios, One Show pencils and CA credits, and have lead their shop to two Cannes Lions Grand Prix and a Grand Clio. They've judged CA, Cannes, D&AD, the One Show, the Clios and other prestigious award shows. Creativity named them two of the top 50 creative people of 2008. Known for their outspoken, no-bullshit style and a passion for mentoring juniors, they're ready to give you advice if you're ready to take it.

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