Advertising plans to boost council funds

Liverpool City Council is beginning a new drive to sell advertising space on its buildings, highways and roundabouts, in a bid to generate almost £1 million to help protect services.

The Mayoral Cabinet will be asked, on Friday 24 January, to approve the adoption of the city’s new ‘Outdoor Advertising Framework’, which aims to maximise the advertising potential of council-owned land and assets.

It would strengthen the council’s ability to work with advertisers and identify sites to attract new business and generate valuable income, which can be ploughed back into providing vital services.

The UK outdoor advertising industry is valued at almost £1 billion, but Liverpool has traditionally not been well-equipped to grow its advertising portfolios. The move from the city council aims to give advertisers the message that the council is open for business.

Liverpool City Council’s cabinet Member for Transport, Councillor Tim Moore, said: “In tough economic times, it’s vital we do all we can to protect services. This is another great example of how we are seeking to make the most of our assets to generate valuable revenue.

“We have many sites across the city which appeal to advertisers, but we haven’t traditionally made the most of them. We know other major cities are bringing in millions of pounds from this sector, so we want to change the way we do things so that we are also well placed to tap into this major income stream.

“Liverpool is a bustling, high-profile, international city, which welcomes hundreds of thousands of visitors from all over the world every year. That makes us an attractive proposition to advertisers. By taking a co-ordinated approach to working with advertisers and becoming better at selling the opportunities that exist on our highways network, our buildings and at other council sites, we can maximise the money we bring in.

“The message we want to give to advertisers is ‘come and talk to us, we are ready to do business with you’. Of course, we will be making sure that we protect the image of the city, and that we only agree high quality advertisements, in the right locations.”

Key sites already identified by the council for the sale of advertising space include the M62 motorway and the big screen on Parker Street in the city centre. The Council is now developing a list of other key local authority-owned buildings, highways and roundabouts, and is beginning talks with national and international advertising organisations who may wish to do business with the city.

Outdoor advertising covers any advertising in the public realm. Currently, advertisement space is sold by the Council on a case-by-case basis, by a range of different departments.

If the new Framework is given the go-ahead, the city’s Highways and Transportation team will co-ordinate and oversee all outdoor advertising developments in the future, identifying and exploiting key strategic locations across the city.

The city council hopes the new corporate, co-ordinated and business-friendly approach will encourage more Advertising Media Organisations to invest in Liverpool and help the Council negotiate the best deals for the city.

The revenue targets set by the city council under the new approach to advertising are £850,000 between 2014 and 2016.