Vehicle Advertising + Road Rage = Stalker?

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Education & Training

Dawn Cook's blog about Road Rage, got me thinking about vehicle advertising.  While driving to an appt this a.m., I counted well over 100 vehicles with magnetic signs or some type of advertising (agents, landscapers, stores, restaurants, delivery service, pizza, computer repair - you get the point). 

I'm a very cautious driver.  Sometimes overly cautions, but always keenly aware that my company name, phone number and website are advertised on my vehicle. I drive a lot of miles and yes, sometimes I do get upset at other drivers behavior.  So much so in fact that I have actually considered rolling down my window and explaining the rules of the road on more than one occasion. Then, I am reminded that my phone number is right below my window and the idiot driver could actually call me, email me, find me and stalk me (or worse) for the rest of my life. 

Would it be worth it to correct their unfortunate miseducation?  Obviously, they failed to learn the rules of the road before they were given their license or perhaps it's been so long that they have forgotten?

Marci Toliver shared an experience where someone actually pulled a gun on her.  WOW!  I can't even begin to imagine what that may have been like. 

So - I'll ask the question - is vehicle advertising worth the exposure OR are we merely asking for trouble?

 

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Rainmaker
1,467,941
Donna Harris
Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com - Austin, TX
Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator
I have had my new plates for almost 3 weeks now.  I am very aware that I have the plates and try to drive much "nicer" than before.  However, I don't have my name and number in big letters all over the car.  I do have my business card magnets on my car, but someone would have to get out of their car and take a magnet for my number if they wanted to call and yell about my driving.  Plates
Feb 27, 2007 02:09 AM #36
Rainer
23,984
Edite Liepina-Lawrence
ERA Tradewind Real Estate - Longmont, CO
Do people actually call on vehicle advertising? Do they see you car and think; "Oh my, there is a realtor, hurry up and call him/her, I need to sell my house!"? I know it is more exposure and sometimes a conversation starter when you parked somewhere, but have you had a significant business increase from this type of advertising? No, really?
Feb 27, 2007 02:20 AM #37
Rainer
56,396
Calie Waterhouse
Chandler, AZ
Community Builder
WOW - Donna - that's a great plate.  No doubt in what you're advertising there. I'm 98% sure we don't have anything like that available here in Arizona.  If we do, I've never seen one.   What kind of feedback do you get? 
Feb 27, 2007 02:51 AM #38
Rainer
71,971
Elaine Reese, REALTOR® in central Ohio
Real Living HER, Powell Ohio - Powell, OH

Aside from all the issues during drive time mentioned here, I've always wondered how sellers feel about having such a vehicle in their drive when they're interviewing listing agents prior to listing. Some sellers may not want the neighbors to know they are moving, especially if they are preparing for a job change or a divorce.

I don't have any real estate stuff on the WEENR mobile, but neighbors in my farm area know my SUV (with the WEENR plate) and will comment about, "I saw you at the house on _____. Are they moving?"

Feb 27, 2007 02:59 AM #39
Rainer
56,396
Calie Waterhouse
Chandler, AZ
Community Builder

Elaine - You know, I've actually had clients ask if I had any vehicle advertising and would I mind removing it before our appointment...for that exact reason - they didn't want their neighbors knowing ...

Another great question to ponder... Would an agent remove their advertising for a perspective client?  Obviously a wrapped vehicle would pose an entirely different issue, but what about magnetic signs?

Feb 27, 2007 03:21 AM #40
Rainer
56,396
Calie Waterhouse
Chandler, AZ
Community Builder

OH!!!  Thank you to everyone for your incredible responses.  I was so excited this a.m. when I got up and saw I had my first *Feature* post.  I even did a little happy dance (which absolutely perplexed my entire family, but hey - you understand .... ) THANK YOU, THANK YOU ;-)

Feb 27, 2007 03:22 AM #41
Anonymous
Amber Sanders
I had never thought about the weirdo phone calls before.  I have car magnets on my car and my realtors have their cars wrapped.  One of them calls it the Circus Wagon and the other likes it.  I think it looks nice and professional. One of my Realtors got a recruiting call off of her car.  My car magnets didn't last long- we have really bad wind here in West Texas so during our last dirt storm one of them came off and I'm not able to find it.  I also love the Texas REALTOR plates.  I am thinking of getting those when I buy my next car.  I aven't heard of many problems with car signs and wraps- I gues to each his own.  Some people it works for- some it doesn't.
Feb 27, 2007 03:26 AM #42
Rainer
4,906
David Smith
Fillmore Realty - Brooklyn, NY
There are many ways those who want to do harm can.  I have considered vehicle advertising as well and, in fact, still am considering it.  I haven't given thought to those who will act out their "road rage" using the information on my vehicle, but my plan is to limit what Information I make available on my car and direct the audience that I am targeting to my web-site.  One would have to be very persistent to then go to my site and "target me or my business there".  Most people won't feel it's worth the effort, but if you get someone who does we're now talking about "intent" to harrass/harm.  There are civil protections should you encounter such persistence.  This behavior has yet to stop the thousands of others across the country from continuing to advertise using their vehicles.
Feb 27, 2007 04:32 AM #43
Rainer
64,790
Kelli Fronabarger
Bend River Realty Inc. - Bend, OR
Realtor - Bend Oregon
I have been thinking about signage for my car for some time and after reading the article here as well as all the comments, I think I'm going to wait. Great post and CONGRATULATIONS on your first featured : )
Feb 27, 2007 04:41 AM #44
Rainmaker
1,467,941
Donna Harris
Donna Homes, powered by JPAR - TexasRealEstateMediationServices.com - Austin, TX
Realtor,Mediator,Ombudsman,Property Tax Arbitrator

Calie, I've only had the plates for less than 3 weeks, so no added business yet.  However, my friends and clients love them and think they are really cool!  My clients that have seen them thought it was just another way that I think outside the box. 

You might want to check your state's website and see if they offer the plates under the specialty plates section.  It was $30 for the plate ($22 going to TAR) and then $40 to personalize it, and with the help of AR, I had many ideas from people on how to personalize them.

Feb 27, 2007 06:10 AM #45
Rainer
89,525
Val Allocco
Staged 2 Sell New York & Long Island - Northport, NY
HSE; ASHSR - Home Stager, for Manhattan, Brooklyn & Long Island

Hey Calie,  Great post and congrats on the featured blog!

I don't think it is ever, in any way, worth involving yourself and/or your vehicle with another on the road.  Signs or no signs, there are a lot of stress-out people out there who can 'flip-out' in a nano-second!  What good does it do anyway?

When I see agressive driving, I get the heck out of the way!

VAL

Feb 27, 2007 08:26 AM #46
Rainer
467,814
Teri Isner
Keller Williams Realty at the Lakes - Orlando, FL
GRI, CRS, CIPS
It seems so common now seeing ads on vehicles that like information overload alot of them are just ignored.  Unless we are stopped or backed up inching along don't really pay attention...do people really look for a realtor by car signs?
Feb 27, 2007 08:32 AM #47
Rainer
56,396
Calie Waterhouse
Chandler, AZ
Community Builder

Val - Thanks for the congrats.  I'm still dancing :-)  Talk about stress, think about driving in Arizona in the middle of summer on a freeway going nowhere and no air conditioning or worse, a Phoenician in New York during the winter trying to get to work in the snow.  I can feel the stress.

Teri - I'm not sure if people look for Realtor specifically, but I do know that I feel more comfortable calling upon service people (or whoever) to come to my house if I have seen their vehicle at a neighbor's home.  It's not an actual recommendation, but in a sense it could be. 

 

Feb 27, 2007 09:21 AM #48
Rainer
80,957
Patrick Harfst
Realty Executives - Phoenix AZ - Gilbert, AZ

Calie,

I've had logos & names/numbers on my PT Cruiser for 6 years... No problems, altho it makes it harder to speed thru school zones!

I'd do it again, but keep it tasteful... We have enough fully wrapped vehicles already!

 

Feb 27, 2007 04:29 PM #49
Rainer
71,971
Elaine Reese, REALTOR® in central Ohio
Real Living HER, Powell Ohio - Powell, OH

I have a question for those who do use the magnetic signs or the car wrap. Do you feel there's any additional risk that your vehicle will be broken into while you're inside getting groceries etc? Many people know that agents use & keep with them a lot of techie toys. Our cars can also be roaming offices with clients files which often contain bank account numbers or SS numbers.

I realize that all cars can be subject to theft if a laptop can be seen, but if I were a thief and saw a Realtor's car, I would think the probability of finding something of value just increased a hundred-fold.

Feb 28, 2007 04:14 AM #50
Rainmaker
58,656
Ann O'Connell
Real estate agent at Oak Real Estate - Boulder, CO
I am a home stager, and there are always curious neighbors wanting to know who it is that's moving furniture in and out of a house. I think a magnetic car sign would be a good idea just to let them know what's going on, and hey, if I get a few calls out of it along the way, even better!
Mar 06, 2007 07:33 AM #51
Rainer
104,591
Michael I. Pulskamp
Mainstreet Brokers - Jackson, CA
REALTOR, EcoBroker, GREEN Desingnee
I have vinyl signs on the back window and both rear quarter windows of my Scion XB. Now I look at it a bit differently than the above post and comments. I have always been able to physically intimidate folks, luckily I have quite a bit of experience tuning it down so as to not come off as a challenge to any but the most drunk. But it is a skill I honed back in the Punk Rock days of my youth. Now I use the awareness of my signs as a sort of training tool for myself. The ID keeps me on my best behavior. I even go out of my  way to stop, and of course pull up in front of people I see in cars stopped along the road. I ask if I can help them with anything like a phone call or such. I have changed a few tires for people and given lots of directions. I haven't got any business from it yet, but lots of good Karma, and I know folks out here in the foothills notice the car. I get stares and questions all the time. I am quite aware, I always keep an eye out for trouble. But really I'm just not willing to live in fear.

Thanks,

Congrats on the post, Great job, keep people thinking!
Mar 06, 2007 06:31 PM #52
Rainer
109,128
Marci Toliver
438-4642 - Mauldin, SC
Anderson SC, Spartanburg,Greenville SC, Home Staging
Callie, I dont have the signs as of yet!  Even after the gun incident, Im still wanting them!
Mar 07, 2007 11:07 PM #53
Rainer
7,458
Sandi Gregory
details (Redesign and Staging) - Puyallup, WA
details (Redesign and Staging) in the greater Puyallup area

I think for stagers, like myself, it may be a little different because it can be a little harder to find us and there aren't as many of us out there. I think as far as advertising dollars go for stagers, it's a good idea. I'm planning on adding them to my back and side rear windows of my car but because of this posting, I think I'll put my website and either my office number (NOT my cell number) or no phone number at all. I'm in the book so they can jot down my company name and look me up if they don't have time to write down the entire website address. 

Good things to think about. . .  thanks.

Mar 09, 2007 04:43 AM #54
Rainer
2,960
M T
Woodridge, IL
Realtor
I've been wondering the same thing. Is it worth it? I'm so hesitant to do this, so I guess I better listen to my gut feeling.
Apr 12, 2007 06:01 PM #55
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Calie Waterhouse

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