Sunday 28 May 2023 ,
Sunday 28 May 2023 ,
Latest News
23 October, 2016 00:00 00 AM
Sunday Special

Billboards in motion

Faisal Mahmud
Billboards in motion

Billboards may not be an eyesore for residents of Dhaka anymore. At least, not the kind of billboard Mad’ad Digital, a new advertising firm, plans to introduce in the city.

It has introduced the mobile billboard. It is a modern-era digital advertisement tool that has gained popularity in many metropolises across the world.
The mobile billboard is a digital billboard mounted on a van. Vinyl-sticker advertisements on vans have been around since the 1960s. But it is only recently that digital billboards have taken a more serious hold on the mobile advertising market.
Breath of fresh air
“Mad’ad has introduced this latest form of mobile billboard marketing in Dhaka. Our vans have digital screens that can display advertisements of different products,” said Mushtaqim Razzaque, managing director of Mad’ad Digital.
Razzaque told The Independent that Mad’ad Digital was formed in 2016 with the idea of bringing a new dimension to the marketing world. It is important because the civic bosses of Dhaka are trying to remove all billboards from the city because of the safety hazards they pose and because they make the city look messy.
In August, Anisul Haque, the mayor of Dhaka North, said that the Dhaka North City Corporation (DNCC) would take legal action against those who would use illegal billboards and posters at their establishments.
Haque made the statement a day after the High Court asked the authorities to explain whether they have taken any step to remove unauthorised billboards, banners, posters, and other publicity materials from establishments in the two Dhaka city corporations.
Over the years, a huge number of billboards has been erected in an unplanned way in Dhaka—in many cases, illegally. Thanks to the lack of proper maintenance, these structures have become unsafe. According to reports, at least three people have been killed and 14 hurt in billboard collapses in the city since 2009.
According to the data available with the civic bodies, of the 3,000 or more billboards in the city, 90 per cent were set up without permission.
“But billboards are a great way of advertising any product since they grab the attention of consumers. But if there are illegal and an excessive number of billboards, the civic bodies have no option but to remove those,” Razzaque said.
“Hence, the companies had to look for an alternative way to brand their companies. Mad’Ad is there to give those companies a different yet effective mode of branding,” he said, adding that they took it to another platform and introduced the concept of mobile billboards in Bangladesh.
“We also wanted to bring something new, something fresh. Advertisements are all about bringing a breath of fresh air so that people get immediately hooked,” he said.
 Mohammed Rizwan, the CEO of Mad’ad Digital, told The Independent that they had already put their first digital billboard van on the street from the beginning of September.
He said the van is equipped with a three-way high-resolution LED imported from Germany. “The van plays soundless commercials of products,” he explained, adding that they do not want to add to the noise on the road.
Besides, having sound in the commercials would not be fruitful because there is a lot of noise on the traffic-choked roads of Dhaka anyway, he pointed out.
“We also want to brand the products—products to which we all can relate, which are available for common people. Since the business module is to restrict it to a maximum of 30 companies on screen, Mad’ad does not wish brand-to-brand from the same business background. This is to give royalty and exclusivity to the brands that are willing to sign in first,” he explained.
He said the charges of putting digital commercials on the vans would be quite affordable. The advertisements are based on 30-second allotted slots. “They have to sign at least three months’ contract with Mad’ad,” he added.
Apart from commercials, the company will also allot slots for videos of public goods. “We are showing videos on social and educational campaigns to educate the citizens of Dhaka to lead a better and safer life,” he said.
He said campaigns like abiding by traffic laws, keeping the city clean, obeying traffic rules, and driving safely, anti-child labour campaigns and many more will be an active part of the display. “The idea is to engage people with the Mad’ad vehicle,” Rizwan added.
People have seen this new initiative as a welcome addition to the city. They said the digital billboard is something new and pleasant to the eyes.
Nihad Ferdous, an employee of a private bank, said that when he first spotted the van on the street, he was immediately drawn to it. “It was catchy and I don’t mind watching free videos while I am stuck in the horrible Dhaka traffic,” he smiled.
Masrura Ahmed, a final year student of architecture at a private university, thinks mobile billboard vans are better than static billboards. “I don’t like the roof of buildings crowded with billboards. It destroys the beauty of buildings. Mobile billboards don’t do that,” he said.
But he sounded a note of caution: “I just hope that streets will not be crowded with those vans like the way roofs have got crowded with static billboards.”
New market in the  making
Rizwan believes that the mobile billboard market will flourish within a very short period of time. “But that doesn’t mean that roads will be crowded with billboard vans and create a nuisance on the streets,” he said.
He said consumer brands are realising that they need to brand themselves very effectively to survive in the market. “The market is very competitive now. People are spending a lot on all sorts of marketing campaigns. People are appreciating unique ideas and innovative methods of marketing,” Rizwan added.
“We are very positive about our idea of Mad’ad and would like to execute the plans in a very dynamic way. Also, as the pioneer, we want to see competitors in the market because that will increase the level of quality,” he said.
“Besides, compared with Dhaka’s traffic, a few advertising vans will be like a drop in the ocean. We believe that digital billboard vans will bring a mode of entertainment to the people stuck in traffic,” he smiled.


Copyright © All right reserved.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman

Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Editor : M. Shamsur Rahman
Published by the Editor on behalf of Independent Publications Limited at Media Printers, 446/H, Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1215.
Editorial, News & Commercial Offices : Beximco Media Complex, 149-150 Tejgaon I/A, Dhaka-1208, Bangladesh. GPO Box No. 934, Dhaka-1000.

Disclaimer & Privacy Policy
About Us
Contact Us

Powered by : Frog Hosting