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One-Minute MarketerAdvertise on a City Firetruck?

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Advertise on a City Firetruck?

Editor’s note: This week we are revisiting some of the One-Minute Marketer’s most popular blog posts from the past. This one was originally published in July 2012.

The city of Baltimore is exploring the idea of selling advertising space on city firetrucks. Cities and states across the country are looking to advertising as a new revenue strategy for raising much-needed funds.<img data-attachment-id="2441" data-permalink="" data-orig-file="" data-orig-size="3038,2025" data-comments-opened="1" data-image-meta="{"aperture":"0","credit":"Getty Images/Hemera","camera":"","caption":"Fire Truck","created_timestamp":"0","copyright":"","focal_length":"0","iso":"0","shutter_speed":"0","title":"101192074"}" data-image-title="101192074" data-image-description="

Fire Truck

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What is wrong with selling the advertising? I’m not against it. However, many are. In the New York Times, Elizabeth Ben-Ishai, the campaign coordinator for the Public Citizen’s Commercial Alert Project, which is designed to curb the spread of commercialization, said, “We are bombarded by ads everywhere we go, and these are public spaces meant to be reflective of the values of our society, not co-opted by the private sector.”

From an advertising standpoint, to me, it’s just one more way that needs careful evaluation before you invest marketing funds. Just because it is available, doesn’t mean you should place your company or organization name on a garbage or firetruck. If it does make sense, what a great way to advertise and help a city keep essential services running efficiently and effectively.

What I really wonder is how the Public Citizen’s Commercial Alert Project markets itself or gets the word out. I’ve never heard of them. Maybe they need to advertise.

Written by:

Mark wrote his first direct-mail fundraising letter in 1981 for the University of Iowa Center for Advancement. The effort raised a few million dollars in undiscovered wills and legacy gifts. From that day forward Mark discovered a love of the big idea that moves the needle. After 12 years at KWWL, Mark became a business owner as a co-founder of ME&V — rebranded as AMPERAGE in 2015. After 25 years of leading creative teams in video production, graphic design, PR, writing and web development, Mark transitioned out of ownership in 2021. Today he serves in an employee role as special projects consultant. He is creatively ambidextrous — son of an artist and engineer — and famous for distilling complex ideas down to a few words and a few visuals. Mark is a writer. When he found that many nonprofits struggled with complex branding puzzles, he wrote the book, “NonProfit-NonMarketing .” He also wrote a novel called “Reenactment.” Mark is an active blogger OneMinuteMarketer® with nearly 1,000 readers each week on LinkedIn, Facebook, Twitter. One of his most popular YouTube videos is on “How to Look Good on Zoom.” One of Mark’s fondest business memories was being named to INC 500 two times and attending the INC 500 conference with other winners. Mark is considered by some a Civil War expert (and that explains his novel). Mark also served as an adjunct professor in the business and in the communications departments at Wartburg College. Mark is a graduate of the University of Iowa and is currently vice president of the University of Iowa Journalism and Mass Communications Advisory Board. Mark is married to state Sen. Liz Mathis, and the two love to travel, even when it means being trapped by a volcano in the Czech Republic for three weeks.