OAAA National Convention & Trade Show Cancelled

Chris Sheldrake

Nancy Fletcher, President and CEO, Outdoor Advertising Association of America, Inc. confirmed this morning that their OAAA National Convention & Trade Show for this year has been canceled.

Current financial conditions have impacted virtually every aspect of the marketplace as the nation grapples with a serious economic crisis. During the past month, OAAA senior staff has personally called every member principal to “take the pulse” of the industry and determine support for the OAAA National Convention & Trade Show planned in May. The calls were used to compile information about how OAAA can better serve its members, how the industry is functioning right now, and how to proceed with pending convention plans.

We heard you. Many of you are struggling and making difficult decisions related to your businesses. A common theme we heard in our calls: now is the time to stay home and take care of our customers and employees. To that end, the OAAA Executive Committee has decided to cancel the 2009 National Convention and Trade Show scheduled May 17-19 in Miami.

OAAA will fully refund all paid registration fees, exhibitor fees, and convention sponsorships by check before Friday, February 20. We regret any inconvenience caused by this decision. In the months ahead, the OBIE Awards will be presented, along with a winners’ book.

OAAA understands these are extraordinary times. Focusing on core priorities, OAAA will continue to serve and support you. Look for these relevant deliverables:

· New, compelling sales and marketing resources that position outdoor advertising as vital to any well conceived media plan, and explain the advantages of outdoor over other media.

· Lobbying and coalition building to protect the outdoor industry as the new Congress and new White House push major transportation legislation.

· New research that will help sales, operations, and public affairs.

· A major effort encouraging outdoor operators to buy from OAAA supplier members. In addition, another big push encouraging advertisers and agencies to buy from OAAA operators (those who make such big investments in the industry.)

· Explanation of change. OAAA is working closely with TAB so that advertisers and outdoor operators understand the TAB EYES ON measurement.

· Problem-solving, info-packed, no-fee OAAA-sponsored webinars. Last week, more than 400 participants heard TAB explain its EYES ON measurement system. This week, Arbitron describes new polling results about billboards in Los Angeles.

Working together, the outdoor industry will emerge from this recession stronger with more market share. OAAA remains resolute in promoting, protecting, and advancing the outdoor advertising industry to ensure a sound and successful future.

Most sincerely yours,

Nancy Fletcher, President and CEO,

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