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Placemat advertising

This advertising company puts your company where your customers eat.
By Mary Dominique D. Torres |

As every first-time entrepreneur finds out soon enough, getting noticed by prospective customers is a very crucial first step to making a sale—and all the more so when competitors are sprouting from every corner. This is why the entrepreneur needs to invest considerable sums in promoting and advertising a new product or service, and would welcome more cost-effective and affordable ways of getting the attention and patronage of prospective customers.

One such advertising medium is being offered by Rabbit Advertising, a company put up by the partners Roger Anthonissen and Karl Kenneth Ramos in Cebu City in December of 2004. Called Ads Placemat, the medium consists of full-color paper place mats with 24 slots for advertising placements measuring 5.25 cm x 5.94 cm each.



Client-advertisers can order the place mats from Rabbit Advertising, which designs and prints the desired advertising messages on the place mats. Rabbit Advertising then delivers and mounts the place mats in the venues chosen by the client. These venues are typically restaurants and other establishments where customers have to wait for a while before they are served. Thus, customers get exposed to the advertising messages on the Ads Placemat for the entire duration of that waiting time. As Anthonissen puts it, “Ads Placemat gives maximum exposure for a minimum of budget.”

Rabbit Advertising requires a minimum order of 5,000 place mats per venue from advertisers availing of the service, at the cost of P43 per day in the case of Metro Manila advertisers. The company estimates that if a customer at each of the restaurants waits for, say, 20 minutes before getting served, the advertising messages in the 5,000 place mats would get a total exposure of 1,667 hours or 69 days during the 20-minute period alone.

That kind of advertising exposure for a minimal cost definitely should prove attractive to many cost-conscious advertisers. Indeed, as of April this year, Rabbit Advertising had already signed up a total of 315 restaurant-venues and 792 advertisers for the Ads Placemat service.



After operating in Cebu City for over two years, Rabbit Advertising branched out to Metro Manila in September 2006. This was after Carl Quema, 25, who was then handling his family’s poultry business, agreed to be a partner in Rabbit Advertising. Quema, who was introduced to Anthonissen by a relative, had expressed interest in the business when it was proposed to him. He then flew to Cebu City to check the viability of the Ads Placemat business. He liked what he saw and decided that it was a good business venture to get into. “I felt that it was a medium that all kinds of businesses could benefit from,” he recalls.


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