I’ve heard from a reliable source in the industry, several of the major billboard companies are moving towards a ban on SMS advertising on billboards. This is in reaction to the both the popularity of SMS marketing and the increase in accidents due to texting while driving. Is this potential ban just playing it safe or are there actual studies on the effects of SMS campaigns on billboards?
I have mixed feelings about this issue. On one hand texting while driving is a huge problem with the Insurance Institute for Highway Safety Drivers reporting that drivers that use a cell phone are four times more likely to get into crashes. If this ban can help reduce the urge for drivers to respond to a billboard ad via text message, I’m all for it. On the other hand, are they forgetting that there is usually 4 other seats in most cars, all of which are not driving the car?
What do you think? Ban or no ban?