ABSTRACT: The study is set out to examine the perception of people towards transit advertisement. it should be noted that advertising campaigns through moving objects have long been in existence and become more very popular in this era of digital printing with digital stickers and digital devices such as car and bus mounted outdoor LED. Do people actually pay attention to such advertisement and if they do, does it influence their buying habits like others, these and some other reasons warranted this paper to study the attitude and perception of people living in Lagos Metropolis towards transit advertisement which is an outdoor medium of advertising especially in the cities like Lagos, Abuja and Port Harcourt. The research was anchored on Perception Theory, Diffusion of Innovation Theory and Recency Theory. The survey research method as a quantitative method was adopted for this study. The questionnaire was used to elicit responses from the respondents that were drawn from Lagos. The research use Probability and Non-probability sampling techniques. Probability gives every member of the population or sampling fame an equal chance of being selected. However, two local governments were simple randomly selected i.e Ikeja and Ikorodu local government after which respondents were chosen in each locations base on convenience while 150 female and another 150 male respondents making 300 respondents were selected. The number of retrieved copies of the questionnaire was 252, representing 84% response rate. Findings show that people in Lagos metropolis attach great importance to transit advertisement; hence, it influences their perception in the way they respond to the advertisement placed in and outside buses and other mobile means of transportation (transit advertisement). The researcher recommends that since the primary aim of advertisement is to promote and sell goods and services. Advertisers should ensure that the ultimate aim of their products be indicated so that the target audience will need no further explanation of the benefits inherent in the particular goods and services.
1.1 Background of the study
Advertising is a non-personal way of passing messages of the products and services of an identified sponsor for the purpose of reminding, persuading and informing the prospects to make a purchase. According to Ewuola (2008) advertising consists of all the activities involved in presenting to an audience, a non-personal, sponsor-identified, paid for a message about a product or organization”. Advertisement is indispensable for both the advertiser and the target audience.
Buttressing the above point, Akinrosoye (2012) writes that “Advertising is an integral part of everyday life. It is a pervasive method of marketing in the society Akinrosoye, (2012) quoting Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON) defines advertising as a form of communication through the media about products, services or ideas, paid for by an identified sponsor.
Shruthi (2014), defines advertising as “any, paid form of non-personal presentation of ideas, goods and services by an identified sponsor.” Ad may be any form of presentation, an illustration in a newspaper or magazine, a television commercial, or a billboard or moving objects like bus, car, train etc. It is not on a person-to-person basis but targeted to the general public.
Advertising is not undertaken by management just for fun or to keep products or services. It is principally involved in persuasion or advocacy even apparently just giving us information, using media that are paid for it to get through to the mass audience with the identity of the advertisers being clear.
However, it is stated that advertising is exposed through a non-personal medium this lead to the careful look at the concept of advertising media which include but not limited to the following according to Kenneth and Donald, (2007:3)
- Transit media
- Posters etc.
To this end, effort is dwelled on outdoor advertising particularly the transit adverts. Therefore, the term; “Outdoor Advertising” corresponds to any advertisements located in open air, i.e., outdoor areas. An outdoor advertisement is the only advertisement medium to which we are exposed involuntarily. While some efforts involved for other kind of advertisements, outdoor advertising is unique in which we experience direct and involuntary exposure to messages.
Kurt (2006) says advertising began with outdoors through window displays, signboards, billboards, posters and other forms of outdoor advertising, advertisers have sought to capture the attention of people waiting for the bus, catching a train, stuck in traffic or walking through shopping precincts other forms of outdoor advertising media include but not limited to transits advert.
The research therefore aims at examining the use, contribution and influence of transit advertisement which is one of the outdoor advertising that is still invoking in this era particularly in the cities like Lagos. However, over the last decade or two, there have been significant changes in both the quantity and form of outdoor advertising when billboard advert is now going digital while transit advert is going more attractive with digital sticker printing.
Transit advertisement is growing at a fast rate, creating competition for traditional media. The new fad in advertising is evolving from being a communication wrap-around on company cars, mass transits and commercial vehicles, among others. The trend is offering individual car owners an opportunity to earn some income by allowing their cars to be used for advertising communications.
Transit advertisement according to Okolo (2013) “involves placement of adverts inside public transport vehicles. There are various ways in which this can be done. Adverts can be placed via installed LED screens; advertisers can also place posters on different compartments in the bus”.
Okolo further posits that; “advertisers can display their innovative prowess by designing creative adverts and images. Creativity is the hallmark of this type of advertising. The medium provides advertisers with the possibility to play around different elements within the vehicle”. Hence, the benefit of transit advertisement cannot be undermined as it combines the basic sensory elements of sound and visual.
However, this medium of advertising has garnered attention within the Lagos metropolis with the introduction of BRT and LAG buses. BRT buses were introduced in Lagos as part of the state government’s Mega City project. It serves as a solution to the transportation challenges faced by commuters within the city. Many passengers board these buses because they are very cheap when compared with the traditional yellow public buses. In recent times, LED screens have been installed in these BRT buses, giving advertisers ample opportunity to take their brands directly to consumers.
Conclusively, transit advertisement is a superb way to showcase a particular products and services to thousands of consumers daily. One BRT bus loads an average of 1,000 passengers daily and 3.6 million passengers monthly thereby offering advertisers the opportunity to reach a wide, diverse and heterogeneous audience. This, however, provides advertisers with the opportunity to attract new customers while fostering loyalty among existing consumers. It is against this backdrop that this research work aims at analyzing the perception of people in Lagos metropolis towards transit advertisement.
1.2 Statement of the Problem
As the name implies “transit medium” of advertising showing that advert message will be transporting from one location to the other, which is a common medium in Lagos Metropolis with inscription on city buses like BRT among others.
By and large, this kind of advert media present advert messages in a transient manner i.e consumers may not be able to get desired information about the product[s] when the vehicle move away. Other problem associated with this medium is that such advert is limited only to where [location] the vehicle able to move to. If the bus moves within Oshodi, other people in another location may not have access to such advert. Yet, it is one of the cheapest and easiest advertising medium that can reach thousands within hours. For instance, products and services message are delivered all over the town and get mass audience exposure.
VacantBoard (n.d) writes stress that BRT Transit advertising is an effective and cost efficient form of outdoor advertising and it offers a great way to reach the urban audience and get your message throughout the city as buses circulate the city landscape and outlying suburban areas and your creative message will be seen multiple times by thousands of people in cars as well as pedestrians with daily impression estimated to 2000 while monthly impression is amount to 62000.
This research study, therefore, intends to critically appraise the situation and how it has affected the practitioners, target audience who are mostly commuters of BRT/LAGBUS and other means of transportation available in Lagos metropolis. It will also looks at how transit advertisement has shaped the attitude, belief and perception of people in Lagos metropolitan areas about products and services being exposed to on a daily basis to know the extent which they are noticeable.
1.3 Objectives of the Study
- To examine the extent at which people in Lagos are exposed to advertising message via transit media like BRT.
- To find out whether the commuters of BRT are satisfied with the quality of adverts messages available to them.
- To ascertain whether advert messages displayed inside and outside BRT influence the commuters’ patronage habit.
1.4 Research Questions
Below are some of the research questions that enable the research tailor and provide answers to some of the problems arise in the problem statement.
- To what extent are people in Lagos exposed to advertising message via transit media like BRT?
- Are the commuters of BRT satisfied with the quality of adverts available to them?
- To what extent has the advert messages displayed inside and outside BRT influence the commuters’ patronage habit?
1.5 Significance of the Study
The significance of this research study aims at revealing to advertising practitioners, advertisers, corporate organizations, manufacturing industries, advertising agencies and the public at large on the attitude and perception of people in Lagos metropolis towards transit advertisement.
However, the study will also be relevant to students, academician and those who want to engage in similar topic. This will invariably allow such researchers to pin-point the weak area(s) of the work and at the same time make correction(s) for the purpose of future research.
1.6 Scope of the Study
Although, the primary aim and objective of this research work is to analyze the attitude and perception of people in Lagos metropolis towards transit advertisement.
Efforts will be made in looking at the demographic factors people living in Lagos metropolitan areas who will respond to the questionnaire that will be supplied. Experience, Educational Background, Age, Sex, Profession e.t.c will be considered before the distribution of research instrument.
1.7 Limitations to the Study
Wide research work of this nature cannot be carried out without some constraints and difficulties. The constraints include;
- Duration and time allotted to the research work which is relatively short.
- Financial setback.
- Stress emanated from combination of other academic activities.
- Dearth of relevant materials to support this research.
However, since the population of the research is limited to Lagos metropolitan areas, the findings may not be enough representation of the situation in the country; therefore, this research can only serve the purpose of a pilot exercise.
1.8 Operational Definition of Terms
Advertisement: A notice, message, picture or film telling people about a product, job or service.
Commuters: People who travels into a city to work each day, usually from quite faraway.
Metropolis: A large important city. Often the capital city of a country, region or state.
Outdoor: Happening or located outside, rather than inside.
Perception: Showing the ability to see or understand things quickly.
Transit: The process of being moved from one place to another. Especially that has to do with buses, trains, cars e.t.c.