Airplane Overhead Bins Latest Billboard Space

ByABC News
July 30, 2000, 2:26 PM

N E W   Y O R K, July 30 -- Advertising agencies are always seeking open spaces to display ads, and if the space happens to be in front of a captive audience, all the better.

If that audience happens to be somewhat upscale, such as air travelers, thats even more of a plus.

Kansas City, Mo.-based Advent Advertising Corp. believes it has a winning ticket with a method to put advertising on the doors of aircraft overhead bins. It has signed on Vanguard Airlines Inc., also of Kansas City, to launch its Advent Airads.

The agency is in the process of installing the ads on all of Vanguards 14 planes and also is in talks with Sun Country Airlines of Minneapolis, said Marck de Lautour, Advents 23-year-old director of marketing.

We digitally record the color of the locker bins and formulate inks that are 3040 percent the color likeness of the bins, he said. When the ads actually get put up theyre very soft and subtle. At the same time, theyre very visible.

The ads on Vanguards Boeing 737-200 aircraft show the airlines V logo and its name in pale gray against the gray background of the overhead bin. It kind of eases passengers into seeing messages on the overhead locker bins, de Lautour said in a telephone interview.

Throwing Out Catch Phrases

The agency, which until now has focused on speciality and promotional advertising, has just started to contact prospective advertisers. In the meantime, it anticipates the Vanguard messages will remain in place for the next 34 months.

Since it took Advent nearly two years to develop the process, which is patented, and win Federal Aviation Authority approval to place the ads on the luggage bins, it can wait a while longer to sign up advertisers.

We dont have a plane of our own obviously, and this is one way to let advertisers see what theyre going to buy, said de Lautour.

He said the ads will be designed mostly for brand recognition. Its basically catch phrases. Were looking at companies that want to advertise their Web sites or new product launches. Its very soft and subtle.