PoSitive signs from tobacco gantries

Your analysis on how tobacco companies are struggling to find a marketing voice (MW April 7) prompted an interesting question about the 66,000 tobacco gantries that are now available as point-of-sale sites. The recent restrictions imposed on tobacco companies have opened up a new media opportunity in prime retail locations across the country.

Enterprising brand owners should be examining how to exploit this opportunity and as the gantries are owned by the tobacco companies, they may be keen to supplement their dwindling revenues in the UK by selling the space themselves. If this is the case, the tobacco companies will have to add value to their offerings by providing footfall information and geodemographic targeting tools to any potential advertisers.

How retailers view these gantries may also complicate the issue for media buyers. It is unclear what revenue share the smaller and independent retailer could expect from these kinds of deals. Conversely the big supermarket brands will almost certainly behave as though they own the gantries in their stores and view them as an opportunity for promoting their own-label products. This would complicate any hoped-for national advertising negotiations.

There is no doubt that an effective media channel has emerged now that gantries have been included in the ban on tobacco advertising. Clever brands should find this channel an exciting opportunity.

Orit PelegBy e-mail

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