HUGE 2017 Predictions: The Future of Sandwich Board Marketing
Aaron Perlut | Partner

It’s prediction season — when savvy, progressive marketers are making their mark with savvy, progressive prediction blog posts about savvy, progressive marketing.

But while those slack-jawed yesteryear aficionados are focused on mom and dad’s mediums like Snapchat, programmatic advertising, Instagram or geofencing — we’re looking at what’s quietly considered the future in elite marketing circles: Sandwich Board Marketing.

So I sat down in front of my handy typewriter, typed up a memo and sent via facsimile to a group of the brightest minds in marketing asking them what’s next on the Sandwich Board Marketing front:

Dave Collett, Weber Shandwick: “Though it’s been rumored for some time, 2017 will finally be the year when sandwich boards are made up of actual sandwiches. We also expect 2017 to see the continued rise of ‘fake’ sandwich boards — sandwich boards that deliberately publish hoaxes, propaganda, and disinformation to drive web traffic inflamed by social media.”

Matt Ridings, XVA Labs: “New Research from XVA Labs definitely proves that declining effectiveness of sandwich boards are not due to the sandwich board medium, but rather the people carrying them. ‘People simply don’t trust someone wearing a sandwich board. Are they wearing clothes? Is this a lifestyle choice they made? Are they being punished?’ We put a paper bag over the head of the wearer and it increased interest by over 42 percent. Not only that, but now it’s a perfect job for difficult to employ asthmatics. A win-win.The cyber is dead.”

Aaron Strout, W20 Group: “The problem with sandwich board marketing is that there is no ‘cyber’ involved. Without the cyber, there is no sandwich board marketing. Now I know people that know the cyber. Beautiful people. Many beautiful people. I love them.”

Jeff Davis, FleishmanHillard: “It’s obvious. America has never been more at risk from a foreign cyber attack on our power grid. If the grid goes down, sandwich boards will save the advertising industry.”

Bill Carlson, TuckerHall: “Sandwich boards will have led displays and you will be able to text messages to them which will be another reason to support autonomous vehicles.”

Brendan Lewis, Expa: “In late June — Toll Brothers, one of the nation’s largest home builders — will introduce Self-Flipping Sandwich Boards which will eventually displace street corner workers and provides another avenue in which automation spells the end of low-wage jobs for Americans.”

Jason Falls, Elasticity: “Two Words: White Boards.”

Peter Shankman: “If they add an Apple Pay feature to the sandwich board, it eliminates the “sorry, I have no money” excuse.”

Michael Cherenson, SCG Advertising + Public Relations: “The trend is now. Sandwich boards represent the ideal social media platform and the perfect blend of paid, earned, shared and owned media — a true media Whopper. Beyond the media, it provides employment opportunities for those who like to wonder aimlessly and annoy others.”

Brad Fitzgerald, Rodgers Townsend: “Our testing in the sandwich board space is showing 100 percent organic reach and incredible ROI. No question, 2017 is the year marketers will finally start cannibalizing their social budgets to invest in sandwich boards in a big way. The future is now.”

Beth Hoops: “Taking a cue from the recent success of Nike’s self-lacing HyperAdapt sneakers, I predict self-adjusting shoulder straps.”

Gus Hattrich, Paradowski Creative: “Recent heat mapping and UX testing have revealed 50 percent of the problem of sandwich boards typically have to do with the body odor of sandwich board engineers. One consumer in the UX group was quoted as saying, ‘Yeah, type can be bad on boards, or often bad grammar, but honestly the old bologna and scotch smell creates a musty storm cloud that renders the board useless.'”

Alex Roberts, FleishmanHillard: “The only thing more overlooked than sandwich board marketing is urinal marketing.”



Aaron Perlut

A former senior Omnicom (FleishmanHillard) counselor and communications executive for two of the nation’s largest energy companies, Aaron has spent more than 20 years in media and marketing helping a range of organizations — from Fortune 500s to professional sports franchises to economic development authorities to well-funded startups to non-profits — manage reputation and market brands in an evolving media environment.

An early adopter in the social media space, creating online communities and working closely with bloggers before they became accepted in mainstream media, Aaron develops unique marketing communications and reputation management strategies meant to break through the clutter of today’s crowded media environment that straddle both new and traditional media realms and has counseled organizations including H&R Block, Capital One, the St. Louis Regional Chamber, CafePress, the National Football League, aisle411, SunEdison, LockerDome, UPS, Anheuser-Busch InBev, Charter Communications, Papa John’s, and the Karate Kid Haircut Association.

He began his career as a television producer and continues to contribute to media including AdWeek, ForbesSocialMediaToday, VentureBeat, HuffingtonPost, and other outlets.

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