Vancouver’s Solara360 Selling $175K Digital Signage Franchise Dreams
June 20, 2014 by Dave Haynes
To the credit of digital signage franchisor Dorn Beattie, President and CEO of Solara360, he concedes in a press release that selling advertising is a tough business.
“In an age where the news, weather, an unlimited library and communication to anywhere is all in your hand and available anytime you want, it is no wonder that the casualty rate of media companies is so high,” he notes.
But … his company is selling $175,000 franchise dreams to small business people on the premise that Digital OOH advertising is a diamond find waiting to be mined.
Solara360’s SCAN system is unique in that we place our own brand of High Definition LCD’s in popular environments where people gather for 60 to 90 minutes to have lunch, dinner or to watch the ‘game.’ Our clients advertising is displayed in a repeating loop on the same screen at the same time as popular sporting events or entertainment features. A Solara360 advertiser could expect their ten second high definition advertisement to appear ten to fifteen times during a ‘BIG’ game on all the Solara360 LCD’s in that location. “It’s amazing exposure for anyones brand at a cost far less than newsprint” stated Beattie. Our SCAN system levels the playing field between Mom and Pop business trying to compete with the big guys.
The actual franchise fee is $25K and the anticipated capital investment to install into 10 venues eats the $150,000. Solara also gets $5 per sold ad per venue, with that covering off 24/7 managed support services.
The advertising canvas is the squeezed top and right-hand side bar of network TV signals. You load up that area with a variation of web display banner ads. You hire someone to sell for you, or sell the ad space yourself.
Vancouver seems to weirdly be some sort of a hub for digital signage franchises. Another company, RTOWN. chased that model for several years but recently did a pivot into small business marketing. I donlt see any hint of the old model on that website.
I had not heard of Solara. Don’t know the folks who run it. I’ll just echo what Beattie says: Selling ads is a tough business.
Companies have for more than 15 years now been trying to sell hyper-local digital signage ad networks, and the list of success stories is short. Really short.
With a food franchise, you tend to have people coming to you because they’re hungry. With an advertising business, you have to go to companies and tell them they’re hungry for advertising, and get them to bite – even though most small businesses have little or no marketing budget.
The company boast it is easily the world’s best digital signage franchise network. How that gets measured, I have no idea. There’s only a few, so they could probably meet for coffee and hash that out.