Collin Huber: We are seeing a good amount of activity with Independent Out of Home companies.

Independent Out of Home companies have remained active through covid says today’s podcast guest Collin Huber, Daktronics Out of Home Advertising Market Manager.

Here are the highlights.

There’s been an increase in replacement activity

One of the trends – we’re just getting into the first wave of replacing some of the original digital displays that were installed in 2007-2009.  As we go for that replacement process the products we manufacture today in South Dakota perform way better and last longer…

On buying a new display versus retrofitting an old display.

At least 80% of the cost of a digital billboard is in the module, so once you do that and you start factoring in the labor to do these re-facings, it’s almost easier and cheaper to just buy a new display.

Independents have been active during covid

We are seeing a good amount of activity with the independent out of home companies.  A lot of this is regionally based.  Some areas of North America are impacted a little bit more…but in general we are seeing a lot of positive happenings with the independent out of home companies…

Where digital billboards make sense

Digital billboards make sense anywhere you have the right amount of heads that can see your display…It can be traffic count or a notable intersection or a corridor within the city that is well known or just near an area where people gather…Some of the other criteria that I’d base it on are the criteria that Ike Wingate mentioned in a previous Billboard Insider podcast: no visual obstructions, knowing the local regulations and a location and a sign where you can maximize your ROI…You don’t need to build the largest sign out there if it looks good and it is easily seen..

Daktronics Urban Billboard, New York City

On urban billboards

We’ve developed a product we refer to internally as an urban billboard.  These would be for any applications that are close viewing…slower moving traffic, that would require a higher resolution product.  Some examples would be a wallscape downtown or a monument type location…We use an 8 or 10 millimeter product for this.  It’s a surface mount technology rather than the three individual red, green, blue thruhole product.  And it has all the attributes that a normal billboard would.  It has a webcam, smartlink, front and rear accessibility…and it comes in 1 or 2 sections so you’re not having to cobble something together on site.

On the useful life of a digital billboard

If you look at any digital product specs there’re going to rate them at 100,000 hours.  And if you do the math that’s 11 years.  That means that they’ll be at their half-brightness at that timeframe…It depends on where you’re at in the United States…It they’re facing the sun and more sunny conditions the degradation process is probably going to be a little quicker…And it’s going to depend on the market.  If there’s new signs getting installed nearby…it’s probably going to be a little bit more sensitive as well. We have a couple signs out there, I think I just saw one yesterday – one of the independent operators that said he’s going into his 14th year.


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