Concern about the environmental hazards of single-use plastic products especially polybags and water bottles have been there since long. However, it has now become a serious issue as people in high places including Prime Minister Modi has taken up the issue for resolution. Single-use plastic items such as poly bags, water bottles and plastic packaging along with the flex substrate used in out of home (OOH) advertising, is now the biggest environmental hazard. These items are disposed after just one use and they end up choking urban drainage and sewer systems, endangering marine eco-systems and affecting the human food chain.
Total ban on single-use plastics from 02 October 2019
Over 95% of OOH displays in India uses poly-flex substrate for printing the advertisements and messages that are mounted on billboards and other OOH display infrastructure. Come 02 October 2019, on the 150th birth anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi, the government of India will begin implementing the ban on single-use plastics across the country. The Indian OOH advertising industry must therefore, take immediate steps to comply with the new regulation and the best way to do that is to adopt digital signage solutions in India.
The future of OOH advertising is digital
Across most industrial nations, the major part of OOH advertising now takes place on LED digital signage although it has not made any significant inroads in India as yet. The Indian OOH market is nearly Rs. 4,000 crores in size and digital OOH comprises just about 5% of this huge market. Now, with the ban on single-use plastic, the main substrate of static OOH displays, which is poly-flex, is no longer a legitimate material. To deal with this huge disruption, Indian outdoor display industry must adopt the digital LED option.
Advantages of digital signage solutions in India
In the current scenario, with a total ban on single-use plastic, which covers poly-flex, the biggest advantage is that digital signage is legitimate while poly-flex is not. Flex print signage allows just one display on one screen but a digital signage allows multiple displays on a single screen, which can be shown multiple times across geographical boundaries. Digital signage owners like government agencies and can earn many times more revenue by displaying messages and advertisements of multiple advertisers.