Gordon Handelsman, founder and chief executive of Biggie Billboards in Westlake Village, has developed a new option for those who want to use the tailgate of their pickup truck to advertise a business, show support for a sports team or promote a politician.
In the past, there were wraps, which can be expensive and permanent. The second option was a sticker, which does not work too well because most tailgates are not flat surfaces and also because it is permanent, Handelsman said.
The third option was a magnet, he added.
“It’s not a very good option because it won’t work on Fords, which have an aluminum tailgate, and also you cannot get it to conform to the bumps and curves on a tailgate,” Handelsman said.
The deficiencies of those three options led Handelsman to invent a removable banner and attachment system for the back end of a pickup that is the main product of his startup.
The banners went on sale about a month ago and as of late May, less than a 1,000 of them had been sold. A complete billboard kit which comes with the attachment system and custom billboard of the buyer’s choice costs $99 with free shipping.
The kits are sold through the company’s website, which Handelsman said is promoted through organic and paid social media and through traditional channels.
All the parts of the attachment system are made in the U.S. with the final assembly being done in Westlake Village, Handelsman said, adding, “it’s a really good value.”
He has a patent pending on the attachment system, which involves a pin that clicks into the attachment on the truck so that the banner can go over the entire tailgate.
“You are not sticking it to it; you are just laying it over it,” he said. “So it hides all the bumps and the curves.”
A major market for Biggie Billoards is small businesses, such as contractors, landscapers or pool cleaners. The system provides an advertising medium whenever the business owner is driving around or parked at a job site.
“We hear over and over from customers that it is such a no brainer to take advantage of it,” Handelsman said. “Why wouldn’t you? They are driving around, they are parked wherever they are doing their work, advertising their business in that way is a no-brainer.”
As Biggie Billboards ramps up sales of its truck banners, it is getting ready to release a product for cars.
“There are two products for cars,” Handelsman said. “The one that we are coming out (with first) is for windows. Then there is something coming out that is more analogous to the truck product but for the back of a car. That one is little further off.”