Deal puts Invacare message on truck fleet

Sunday, August 31, 2003

Elyria, Ohio- Invacare's new shipping contract with All Pro Freight System could translate into increased sales and new customers for Invacare suppliers.

As part of a 5-year deal signed with the trucking company, Invacare received 20 free advertisements, which will appear on the sides of All Pro trucks.

" The real intent behind this is to increase awareness for the Invacare brand and the products we manufacture," Susan Elder, Invacare's director of marketing communications, said.

The ads will span the side of the trucks and will feature golf pro Arnold Palmer and Invacare's logo and slogan, "Yes, you can." The ads also will include Invacare's Web site address as a contact for prospective customers.

Calls generated from the truck-side advertising will be referred to providers in the caller's local area, determined by their zip code.

" The ads will give us a lot of visibility on the highways," Elder said.

Rod Harris, president and chief executive officer of Truckads, an outdoor mobile media company, agreed. Harris said truck-side advertising could generate thousands of impressions daily with new customers.

A study conducted by General Motors concluded that more than 90% of occupants in adjacent vehicles notice truck graphics, and the majority of those people expressed positive impressions toward that advertiser or brand, Harris said.

" It's a really great place to reinforce a name," Harris said.

According to Harris, advertisements that appear on the driver's side will generate 44,000 impressions per day, and a wrap around ad could translate into 62,000 new customer impressions.

Invacare's advertisements will appear on 20 trucks, which will travel from Ohio to the New York are and then on to Florida. The company hopes to add 30 more truck advertisements in the next year, Elder said.

Invacare had been interested in truck side advertising for some time and saw the shipping renegotiations process as an ideal time to raise the idea, Elder said.

" We typically use larger shipping companies that are not as flexible," she said. "All Pro was more flexible and interested in meeting our needs in doing this."

Invacare traditionally has advertised only on television, radio and in print, but the company is looking to expand its Arnold Palmer campaign, which began a year and a half ago. They are in the process of producing a new commercial for home sale oxygen systems featuring the golf pro, who previously had only appeared in ads featuring Invacare's line of powered wheelchairs and scooters.

" Palmer is being integrated into more of our advertising," said Elder.