Does advertising on utility poles work in the digital age?

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Anyone driving along New Jersey roadways may notice advertisements for local businesses stapled to utility poles.

These signs advertise everything from real estate and used cars to barbershops and even rhythmic gymnastics. But does this type of advertising still work in the digital age? News 12’s Brian Donohue called all the businesses who stapled ads on a utility pole along Route 35 in Hazlet to find out.

The owner of a trash hauling business says that he has given up on the strategy. But several other business owners say that they can still drum up clients from these flyers.

Chris Banfich owns a gutter cleaning and power washing business. He says that he has only posted four signs on poles. He says that he keeps track of them all to make sure that they don’t fall down. He says that he gets four or five jobs a week off of those signs.

“It does work,” he says. “Is it as effective as Google advertising? 100% no,” he says.

“I made $5,000 the first time I put it up,” another business owner told Donohue. “I haven't done it a while because it's a pain in the ass with the cops and everything.”

There are laws against posting flyers on utility poles in the state. Some towns will issues fines, while others do not enforce the ordinances at all. It mostly depends on if the business posts only a few signs or plasters them all over the roadway.

Fines for hanging sings on a pole are set by state statute. They can range from $50 to $500.

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