Fink’s Used Cars: How a Digital Billboard Help Them Win


Of all the success stories about digital billboards, nearly all involve big brands in big cities with big budgets.

So it came as a surprise when last year’s Watchfire Digital Billboard Awards recognized Barnes Advertising in Zanesville, Ohio as Best In Show for its Fink’s Used Cars campaign.

Zanesville is located about 55 miles east of Columbus on I-70 and has a population of roughly 25,000. As such, the Fink’s Used Cars use case offers an opportunity to examine a real-world application of digital billboards for small business.

The Problem

Fink’s Used Cars – like virtually all businesses – is focused on growing sales revenue and profitability. This is best accomplished by increasing the number of prospects entering the dealership.

To accomplish this, they leverage a mix of advertising and marketing approaches. One of the challenges facing Fink’s is keeping their rapidly churning inventory updated across these varied channels efficiently and within reasonable manpower constraints.

Barnes Advertising was brought in to help craft a solution to increase dealership traffic while addressing the inventory and manpower issues. After studying the dealership’s business processes and applying them to available technical solutions, Barnes proposed an inventive solution that met their customer’s requirements.

The Solution

Finks-Used-CarsBarnes Advertising deployed 3 digital billboards across Zanesville as part of a 13-week campaign. These billboards dynamically displayed details on the most recent cars added to Fink’s inventory.

This was accomplished by integrating the digital billboard platform with existing Fink’s systems and workflows, resulting in no additional manpower or work effort. Here is how the solution works:

• New car inventory is scanned into the existing inventory platform. No changes to the process were required on the part of the dealership.

• The inventory platform automatically generates an RSS feed containing details on the new vehicle.

• The digital billboard platform – Ignite OA – extracts pertinent elements of the RSS feed.

• The digital billboard platform then sends these elements of the RSS feed to the three deployed billboards where the data is automatically displayed.

This end-to-end solution requires no manual intervention outside standard client processes.

Barnes Advertising previously used the concept of integrating RSS feeds with digital billboards for a radio station client. In that application, metadata on the current song being played by the station was automatically displayed on digital billboards as a dynamic advertisement.

The Outcome

The 13-week campaign proved to be a success, as measured by three key metrics:

• Increased prospective customers visiting the dealership.

• Increased traffic on the company website.

• Increased telephone inquiries on vehicles displayed on billboards.

The campaign also succeeded in not requiring any additional client manpower.

Barnes Advertising is now exploring how to expand on the success of this campaign. These efforts will focus on how to optimize results by improving the management of displayed content relative to refresh rates and display times.

Longer-term, solutions will become available to allow for richer dynamic content – such as high-resolution photos – to be included in the displays.

In coming years, we will see a proliferation of automated dynamic signage solutions. These solutions will become a regular part of our environment and will represent growth opportunities for the advertising and digital display industries.

Source: Internet Video of Things



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