RTA makes a stupid decision

The Dayton Business Journal has their facts wrong.

Bus advertising sales over the last 8 years has generated 2.7 million dollars for RTA.

It could have generated more- but, that might have required one more employee than the sole employee dedicated to selling ads. It could also have generated more money, if they charged higher rates- because this was a “Best buy” for the Dayton market.
Burritos be gone: RTA votes to end bus advertising – Dayton Business Journal:

The Greater Dayton Regional Transit Authority voted late Thursday to discontinue advertising on its public buses, allowing advertising contracts to expire this year from companies such as Chipotle Mexican Grill. The Chipotle ads made the buses look like burritos, the restaurant’s signature product.RTA board members said they’re taking steps to make the buses look more uniform in color and more appealing to customers.

Advertising revenue from the buses brings $80,000 per year, just one-tenth of 1 percent of the RTA’s operating revenue. The RTA also must re-paint a bus every time it changes an advertisement, adding to the cost.

The repainting argument is also bull- because they just put a new wrap on the bus, when they take the old one off- no need to repaint.

While all residents of Montgomery County have already been taxed a .5% sales tax surcharge to support RTA- we are now being asked to reduce an income stream that helps support public transit- all for “vanity.”

Inexpensive outdoor advertising is one of the most effective local tools for locally owned business. Cutting an affordable way for small local businesses to advertise is another step in the Wal-Martization of our community,

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4 Comments on "RTA makes a stupid decision"

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Bruce Kettelle

If all these facts are correct then they have recently experienced a drop in revenue fromover 200k per year to 80k. That is a big difference and would make me want to look closer.

But the need for locations to place outdoor advertising grows as the number of permitted billboards and bus stop benches shrink. The wrap is an effective tool to reach residents in the Dayton market and should be able to generate the revenues they have been accustomed too. But it shouldn’t take two people.


Aside from the economics of all this, I sort of liked the burrito busses….this ad campaign was witty and fun, which is some of the best & more memorable advertising.

David Esrati
David Esrati

They have one sales person. Then there are the guys in the maintenance shed who put the small signs on.
They are cutting all advertising- not just the full wraps- my source is Janet Moore- the woman who sells the bus ads.
The Dayton Business Journal story has many misquotes- the 80K a year isn’t close to the right figure- each full wrap is $25K a year- plus materials and installation (my firm can provide a full wrap for $5,500- not including the design).
So just 5 buses counts for more than $80K even after paying Janet.

Bruce Kettelle

Sorry Janet – I didn’t consider there might be more responsibilities than just selling the wraps.