Bus Advertising | Planning and Buying Media (2022)

Bus advertising is a very popular form of outdoor marketing and with 4.53 billion bus journeys made every year you can see why - particularly as those travelling represent a captive audience for advertisers.

Advertising inside buses, seat advertising and advertising on bus sides is therefore favoured by household names and local brands alike and can be used for both commercial and public service messages to hit a variety of target markets. It is a high-frequency form of advertising.

If bus advertising is something that you are interested in, contact us today and one of our friendly media planning team will call you to discuss the various options available.

Most bus campaigns have a recommended minimum spend of £3000 to have a successful impact but this depends on your aims.

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(Video) Week 12 Lecture 1 Media Planning and Buying

What is Bus Advertising?

It basically refers to the marketing on bus vehicles and their travel infrastructure. This allows for bus users to become exposed to advertising messages as they travel, and perhaps, more importantly, also the public who see the buses and their adverts on the street. These adverts basically allow brands to communicate with a variety of different consumers across the socio-economic scale, with buses travelling into all corners of the country every day.

So, whoever you’re marketing to, it’s likely you’ll be able to hit your target audience using this popular form of out-of-home advertising and the various options available. As many million people use this popular form of transport, it is easy to see why it is so popular with many clients we deal with at PromoMedia, offering affordable options and a great return on investment.

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Bus Advertising | Planning and Buying Media (1)

What are The Main Types of Bus Advertising Available?

There are numerous ways that buses can be used for advertising. The most popular types of bus advertising are:

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  • Bus back advertising and adverts on theexterior of buses- these are great and mainly target drivers of other vehicles who are stuck behind buses in traffic, at traffic lights or crossings. More detailed advertising messages can, therefore, be placed on the rears (as dwell time is high): a rarity for transport marketing. Again, these are a relatively cheap form of outdoor advertising and popular with lots of companies.
  • Bus side advertising- (the main strip on the side) is also very effective - as well as T-side bus advertising, which is a larger version of this. These essentially operate as a moving billboard and are mainly seen by pedestrians walking on pavements, they are particularly effective in areas of high footfall in places such as town and city centres. This type of advertising is very popular in theretail sector.
  • Bus T-side advertising- this is the large T-side poster available on the side of some buses.
  • Bus wrap advertising-is the most effective but also the most expensive form of bus advert. This is essentially branding the whole of a bus; front, back and sides. It basically allows your product to become a travelling advert! With bus warp advertising, the artwork is even placed over windows with the usage of self-adhesive perforated graphics, allowing passengers within to still see out whilst those outside are presented with a bright and seamless poster.
  • Bus seat advertising and panel adverts- inside of the vehicles are the most common form of advertising, these sit above the seats, fixed to either the walls, windows or ceilings. These are hired for set time periods and can be rotated between vehicles to ensure there aren’t too many repeat messages on one bus (these ads are sometimes known as cove adverts or bus seat advertising). These are obviously great as they are seen by the travellers for the duration of their journey and they are a popular form of bus ads with all types of industry sectors particularlyfinanceandhealthcare.
  • Bus bench advertising- advertising with stickers and vinyl on the actual seats at bus stops.
  • Bus shelter advertising (including interactive bus shelter advertising)- having posters on or inside the bus stops.Bus stop advertising (a typical bus stop poster size is a 6 sheet) can be used to reinforce other messaging whilst adding a clever and creative twist to really create something memorable and shareable. Examples of this includeNorwegian Airlines, who converted bus stop seats into faux-wooden sauna benches,Wonderbrawho created the illusion of glass broken by large breasts, andApple’s Macbook Airwho installed swings into bus shelters!
  • Bus ticket advertising- advertising on the rear of tickets.Advertising across bus travel infrastructure such as the back of tickets is a high-frequency method that can also be used for both commercial and public service messages. The blank space on the back of tickets makes for a marketing opportunity that people tend to keep in their wallet or purse – so is a popular choice for coupons or point-of-purchase usage.

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What Are The Costs of Bus Advertising?

The three main factors which determine the costs of advertising on a bus are below:

  1. Location– some areas of the country are more expensive than others. Areas with a denser population mean that they are more expensive as they are seen by more people. For example, London bus stop advertising and London bus ads, in general, are more expensive than more rural areas and regional campaigns.
  2. Size of fleet– the number of buses you choose to advertise on will impact the overall costs; the more buses you want your bus ads on the higher the costs.
  3. Type of advert– as mentioned there are lots of bus advertising options in very simple terms the bigger the ad the higher the cost. That said, the bigger ads have more impact and a better return on investment, so the higher outlay is often a sound investment.
  4. Length of campaign– the longer you want your bus ads to run the more expensive, again, however, it is proven that the longer the ads are up the better the return on investment.

As you can see the costs of advertising on buses varies, for more information or a free quote drop us a message today.

What are The Benefits of Bus Advertising for My Company?

Many million people travel by bus every day, and many people prefer buses to other forms of public transport, for advertisers this offers great benefits, the main ones are:

  • Captive audience - it is a period in which we’re seated and often not really focusing on anything specific. Unless a bus passenger is new to a location, in which case they’re more inclined to be looking out of the window, their focus is easily drawn to advertising – particularly if it is bright, eye-catching or clever. A captive audience of this type is more likely than those ‘on the move’ to enter a URL into their device or take an action stipulated on an advert. Keeping your advertising interesting and clear but intriguing enough to encourage further activity can be extremely beneficial and successful.

Bus Advertising | Planning and Buying Media (2)

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  • A varied social target audience can be reached - bus users can be identified and broken down into several socio-economic groups, including some that can be hard to reach. For example, older people are likely to use bus travel in the UK over other methods of transport due to their free usage but are often not easily reached using online or television advertising. Generally, as buses drive through all areas most social and economic groups are likely to see these ads.
  • Wide geographical reach - another benefit is that even those who don’t use buses themselves are still prone to seeing bus advertising: 90% of the British population live within 5 minutes of a bus route. It’s important therefore not to discount it from your marketing campaigns, even if you think your target audience aren’t regularly using the bus, as they will still be exposed to marketing messages on the side of vehicles, as well as at bus stops.
  • Works as part of a broader campaign - bus advertising can also reinforcebrand messages as part of your overall marketing mix, even if you don’t use it as a primary advertising channel. With high levels of brand awareness in recall tests, bus advertising can enhance your existing offering and become an invaluable part of your communications strategy. PromoMedia are able to advise, create and manage your bus advertising campaigns – whether they’re a reinforcement of other messaging or the fundamental marketing channel for your brand.

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Some Fun Facts and Stats About Bus Advert- Did You Know...?

  • Almost 20% of buses in the UK run late: an inconvenience for passengers but a bonus for marketers as bored commuters have nowhere else to go and often nothing else to look at!
  • 33% of all bus journeys made in the UK in the last week are commutes.
  • 43% in the last week for shopping trips.
  • 21% in the last week for social visits.

Targeting Demographics with Bus Advertising

All adverts on buses can be targeted; right down to set routes. For example, public service messagesaimed at children can be placed on school buses, event messaging can be placed on routes near to where an event is happening (eg. a concert, stage show), and national product messages can be plastered over all routes (London bus advertising typically carrying large national campaigns), whilst local companies can be very specific. The best bus stop advertising methods, therefore, vary depending on what you are promoting. Whether this is a local product or something with a national appeal (many people prefer buses and many million use them every week). It can be managed by contacting the bus travel provider directly, however, this can be complicated as there are hundreds of them across the country and in approaching media owners directly potential advertisers (such as yourselves) end up paying rate card costs. At PromoMedia we manage these relationships for you and have existing relationships in place, so we can successfully place your bus advert across various bus fleets at the best advertising rates, no matter where they are in the UK.

Combination Marketing Options - What Other Options Does It Work Well With?

It is also commonly combined with other forms of outdoor advertising. Typically successful combinations include other general forms ofoutdoor advertising, targeted localtelevision advertising andtrain station advertising.

Bus Advertising | Planning and Buying Media (3)

(Video) Inspiria Outdoor Advertising a leading media buying and planning firm in new york

Frequently Asked Questions About Bus Advertising & Bus Stop Options

Here are the most popular questions we get asked about bus advertising.

"How much is it to advertise on a bus?"

As discussed in the guide, these vary depending on a number of factors such as location, time of year, number of buses you want to advertise on and type of bus advert.

"Is bus advertising effective?"

Yes, many people prefer buses as their daily form of travel and it is surprisingly used by many million passengers across the UK every day (and bus advertising is seen by a million people not using them). The beauty of this form of outdoor advertising is that it is not just seen by passengers but by passersby and other travellers and drivers.

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If bus advertising is of interest to your company, whether it’s any of the options listed on this page from bus stops ads to bus shelters or tickets, please do not hesitate to contact us today.

We look forward to hearing from you and getting the wheels in motion!

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What type of advertising is bus advertising? ›

Bus advertising (often referred to as “billboards on wheels”) is a form of transit advertising that belongs to the out-of-home advertising channel. Transit advertising refers to any promotional materials that aim to catch customers outdoors or when they are not at home.

How effective is advertising on buses? ›

According to the American Public Transit Association (APTA), transit advertising generates over half a billion dollars reaching up to 83 percent of commuters on weekdays and 69 percent on weekends. Transit advertising is an efficient and effective way to make a significant, memorable impact.

What is an advertisement on a bus called? ›

Bus advertising, also known as transit advertising, has become an increasingly popular method for many types of businesses to market their products or services.

Why are buses good for advertising? ›

Buses travel on the road somewhere between 10 and 18 hours a day, usually seven days a week, which is ample time for your ad to be seen by many potential consumers. Buses give your audience the opportunity to see your message repeatedly, which gets ingrained in their minds.

How do I advertise my bus service? ›

You can advertise your brand across the entire interiors and exteriors of the bus through panel advertising services. Large-Sized Banners and Bus Wraps: You can post large-sized banners or brand the entire bus through bus wraps for enhanced brand promotion.

What is the best form of advertising? ›

Word-of-mouth advertising is considered the most effective form. It has the desired qualities of strong credibility, high audience attention levels, and friendly audience reception.

How much does it cost to advertise on a bus? ›

Bus Exterior AdsRange of $150 - $600 for traditional ad sizes and $2,500 - $6,500 for larger/specialty ad sizes -- per display per 4 week period
Bus Stop Shelter AdsRange of $150 - $600 for small to medium size markets and $3,000 to $6,500 for high-income areas -- per display per 4 week period
2 more rows

How much does it cost to advertise on a public bus? ›

The Cost of Bus Advertising

Interior ads can range from $25 to $125, while exterior ads can run from $100 to $6,000 and up.

When did bus advertising start? ›

This article will investigate how transit advertising has evolved over the years. The earliest recorded evidence of transit advertising in the US dates back to 1850. Found in New York City was the first panel sign fixed to the outside of streetcars to advertise the local department store, Lord & Taylor.

What is transit advertising media? ›

Transit media is a form of out-of-home advertising that displays advertisements in or on the outside of vehicles, such as on the side of or above the seats of a bus or tram.

What are the examples of transit media? ›

You probably have a pretty good idea already based on the opening of this lesson, but transit media refers to advertising placed in, on, or around modes of public transportation: buses, subways, and taxis, as well as at bus, train, and subway stations.

What is transit advertising examples? ›

Also called as advertising on transport, Transit Advertising is advertisement placed on or in any mode of transport – from buses to taxis, trains, trams, and subways. It also includes advertisements placed in transport precincts such as bus stops, subway entries, fuel stations and others.

How effective are bus wraps? ›

A bus wrap can generate anywhere between 30,000 and 70,000 impressions per day. Whether it's drivers, passengers, or pedestrians, an estimated 95% of Americans are reached by targeted vehicle ads.

Why is transit advertising more effective in large cities? ›

A transit advertisement can reach a broad audience. Buses, trains and taxis travel all over the city, which means every day many people of all ages, genders, and socioeconomic backgrounds will see your brand message. This gains you key exposure when targeting a specific geographic area.

How much does it cost to advertise on MTA? ›

Backlit DioramaRange of $400 - $1,950 per display per 4 week period
2 SheetRange of $400 - $950 per display per 4 week period
Digital/LED/VideoRange of $500 - $800 per display per 4 week period
Interior Car Card (Vertical Format)Range of $75 - $150 per display per 4 week period
3 more rows

Is an example of social network platform for advertisements on Internet? ›

The most widely used platforms for social media advertising include Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Instagram, Pinterest, Snapchat, TikTok, and YouTube. Different social networks serve different audience segments.

How do you advertise successfully? ›

Here are five things to check off your list as you're planning your ad campaign:
  1. Carefully define and study your target market. ...
  2. Establish set and measurable goals. ...
  3. Develop a compelling message and creative. ...
  4. Identify which platforms would best deliver your message to your target market.
10 Dec 2019

Which media is more effective? ›

Despite the impact that digital media has created, research often shows that print media enjoys greater credibility. Excessive data at times can be misleading and readers believe that there is a lot of misinformation present on the web. On the other hand, consumers view print media as more believable and trustworthy.

What is importance of advertisement? ›

Advertising is important because it can drive business growth. Advertising works to amplify your small business marketing efforts and helps you reach the right audience with positive, targeted messaging that converts potential customers into paying customers.

How much do advertising posters cost? ›

Most communities are pocked with posters, with monthly costs typically ranging from $350 to $650 per location, plus printing. Poster printing is rather expensive when you wish to print only a few copies, but when the volume exceeds a few dozen of the same image, posters usually cost between $85 and $125 per board.

How much does it cost to put a ad on a billboard? ›

The classic billboards can cost as low as $250 per month, especially when they are in rural areas, and as much as $14,000 per month or more if they're located in midsize or large cities. Digital billboards are more expensive, coming in between $1,200 and $15,000 or more per month.

How much does a 30 second TV ad cost in UK? ›

A 30-second slot on daytime TV can cost between £1,100 to £2,200 peak rates for shows such as Hollyoaks and Catastrophe are around £10,000 to £20,000.

What is broadcast advertising? ›

Generally speaking, broadcast advertising is radio, television, and Internet advertising. The commercials aired on radio and televisions are an essential part of broadcast advertising.

What is Speciality advertising? ›

Speciality advertising, also known as promotional merchandise, consists of products branded with a company or brand's logo or slogan and distributed at little or no cost to promote a brand, corporate identity, or event.

What size is a bus stop ad? ›

Creative Due Dates:
FormatEst. Impressions/Views
Bus Stop ShelterRange of 9,000 to 17,000 per ad per day. Size: 47.5" W x 68.5" H, 48" W x 69" H or 48" W x 72" H

What is a media vehicle? ›

A media vehicle is a specific television program, digital media, newspaper, magazine, radio station, outdoor advertising location, etc., that can be employed to carry advertisements or commercials (or any other marketing communications).

What is a bus wrap? ›

A bus wrap, more generally known as a vehicle wrap, is a specially printed film that is applied to a vehicle. When applied, the wrap can transform the vehicle's look with bold colors and sharp graphics. Many organizations utilize bus wraps to turn their vehicles into marketing tools.

What are the media types? ›

Modern media comes in many different formats, including print media (books, magazines, newspapers), television, movies, video games, music, cell phones, various kinds of software, and the Internet.

How do you create a transit ad? ›

Transit ads are great in reaching people on a daily basis.
Watch a brief video or read this short article to discover how to get your ads on public transit in five simple steps.
  1. Select the Markets. ...
  2. Choose the Transit Ad Formats. ...
  3. Crunch the Numbers. ...
  4. Pick the Advertising Period.

What is meant by mobile advertising? ›

The term mobile advertising refers to any form of advertising that appears on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers. Companies advertise on these devices through text ads via SMS or through banner advertisements that appear embedded on a mobile website.

What are the characteristics at transportation ad? ›

  • Openness and accessibility. Designed and organized for the efficient, convenient, and expeditious movement of large volumes of people and goods, transportation systems must have a high degree of user access. ...
  • Extent and ubiquity. ...
  • Emphasis on efficiency and competitiveness.
19 Nov 2001

What is the difference between advertisement and sales promotion? ›

Advertising is done to build brand image and increase sales, whereas Promotion is used to push short-term sales. Advertising is one of the elements of promotion while the promotion is the variable of the marketing mix. Advertising has a long term effect but at the same time promotion has short term effects.

Are billboards good advertising? ›

Billboard advertising is effective for building brand awareness and broadcasting your business (or product or campaign) to as many people as possible. Because they're in such busy areas, billboards tend to have the highest number of views and impressions when compared to other marketing methods.

What is covert advertising give an example? ›

The phrase covert refers to anything that's hidden behind anything else. Have you ever seen an actor drinking coca cola between movies? That is an example of Covert advertising! The brand Coca-Cola is endorsing itself through the movie without being the centre of attraction.

What is bus shelter advertising? ›

Bus shelter advertising is a relatively self-explanatory concept. Also referred to as transit shelter ads, this describes promotional and marketing content that's published on bus stops and stations nationwide, with a view to targeting commuters as they go about their daily business.

What is meant by mobile advertising? ›

The term mobile advertising refers to any form of advertising that appears on mobile devices such as smartphones and tablet computers. Companies advertise on these devices through text ads via SMS or through banner advertisements that appear embedded on a mobile website.

What is transit media advertising? ›

Transit media is a form of out-of-home advertising that displays advertisements in or on the outside of vehicles, such as on the side of or above the seats of a bus or tram.

What are the various objectives of advertising? ›

Advertising has three primary objectives: to inform, to persuade, and to remind. Informative Advertising creates awareness of brands, products, services, and ideas. It announces new products and programs and can educate people about the attributes and benefits of new or established products.

What is overt advertising? ›

Overt commercials are video advertisements that present the promoted brand and sponsor clearly, and disclose its sponsor and marketing nature expressively.

What is the purpose of social advertising? ›

Social advertisement targets audiences' demographics based on customers browsing histories. This helped companies understand users' interests and target a specific group of users.

How many people see bus stop ads? ›

Bus advertising reaches over 48 million adults over a typical two-week period, making it one of the highest reaching marketing mediums available.

How big is a bus stop ad? ›

Sizes will vary but a typical ad display will be approximately 4' wide by 6' high.

How much does it cost to advertise on MTA? ›

Backlit DioramaRange of $400 - $1,950 per display per 4 week period
2 SheetRange of $400 - $950 per display per 4 week period
Digital/LED/VideoRange of $500 - $800 per display per 4 week period
Interior Car Card (Vertical Format)Range of $75 - $150 per display per 4 week period
3 more rows

What are the 4 main mobile marketing tools? ›

Mobile marketing is one of the oldest forms of advertising, yet it continues to play a significant role in the modern marketing arena, thanks to its effectiveness. Some of the most popular tools and techniques adapted today include ringless voicemail, in-app marketing, geotargeting, SMS, and social media marketing.

What are the characteristics of mobile advertising? ›

As Sinisalo said in 2010, mobile content marketing allows companies to communicate with customers in a unique and engaging way.
Content Marketing: what are the unique characteristics of mobile?
  • Anytime, anywhere. ...
  • Real time communication. ...
  • Location-based content marketing. ...
  • Personalization. ...
  • Consumer-controlled interactivity.

What are examples of mobile advertising? ›

What is an example of mobile advertising? There are many ways to display ads on mobile, including Facebook Ads, Snapchat Ads, Instagram Ads, YouTube video ads, in-game ads, SMS ads, and push notifications from smartphone apps.

What are the example of transit media? ›

You probably have a pretty good idea already based on the opening of this lesson, but transit media refers to advertising placed in, on, or around modes of public transportation: buses, subways, and taxis, as well as at bus, train, and subway stations.

What are the media types? ›

Modern media comes in many different formats, including print media (books, magazines, newspapers), television, movies, video games, music, cell phones, various kinds of software, and the Internet.

What are the types of transit advertising explain them briefly? ›

Types Of Transit Advertising
Indoor Transit AdvertisingOutdoor Transit Advertising
Inside cardsOutside posters
Platform, terminal, or station posters


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