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Does Aerial Advertising Work? - Statistics & Effectiveness

Instructor: Lauren Riley

Lauren has taught college level organizational behavior and has a master's degree in Business Administration.

In this lesson, we will define aerial advertising, discuss the different forms of aerial advertising, and investigate the effectiveness of it as a marketing channel.

Overview of Aerial Advertising

When you think of car tires, which brand first comes to mind? Did you think of Goodyear? If so, this could be in part because of its longstanding aerial advertising campaign. While Goodyear owns a fleet of non-rigid and semi-rigid blimps that are almost synonymous with the Goodyear brand, aerial advertising can come in many different formats. This form of advertising has been used as early as the 1920s when flight was still a new technology. We will discuss these formats in more detail below along with the cost and effectiveness of aerial advertising.

The Goodyear Blimp has flown above football games for more than 60 years.
goodyear blimp

What Is Aerial Advertising?

Aerial advertising is a form of marketing in which some form of aircraft is enlisted to create or display a marketing message. Messaging could incorporate blimps, drones (unmanned aircraft), planes and banners, skywriting, or flogos (short for floating logos and created by a shaped mass of lighter-than-air soap bubbles).

Media in aerial advertising is most often a static ad, such as a banner, logo, or lighted sign. However, it can also utilize dynamic ads, such as an animated lighted sign, skywriting, or audio. Aerial ads are generally very short and designed to catch the eye of their audience with a very brief message or logo.

Effectiveness of Aerial Advertising

In a survey of 2,194 people at Miami Beach where aerial advertising is often employed, 88% of participants were able to recall the passing of an aerial ad within 30 minutes; 79% were able to recall exactly what was being advertised, and 67% could recall at least half of the message.

Statistically, this level of recall is much higher than other forms of marketing such as digital banner ads, TV commercials, or radio spots. Ads must be kept brief in order to ensure they can be read.

Some aerial advertisement companies boast as high as a 20% response rate to their ads, almost four times the response rate of mail or email campaigns. Aerial ads are most effectively used where large groups of people are gathering outdoors such as beaches, concerts and sporting events, and popular tourist destinations.

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