'Advertisers get a new vehicle to make pitches'
"People see us coming and start to grin. They react to this form of advertising favorably because it's unique, it's fun and it's eco-friendly. Most people have fond childhood memories of bike riding," said Michael Dudich, president of Mini Mobile Media.
When Dudich's job was eliminated last year, he saw a chance to strike out on his own. He and the operations director, Joe Petrucelli, began surfing the net for ideas. "I saw a story about an advertising bike company in London called Promobikes and realized that I'd actually seen them," said Dudich. When he contacted the company, the owners granted him permission to start the first American company and sold him the bikes.
"I thought of this as an urban product that would work in Midtown, Buckhead and downtown. Atlanta has proved to be a welcoming business environment," said Dudich.
He launched the company with four bikes and an ad campaign for Ted's Montana Grill in October. In addition to the billboards, the riders carried menus and discount fliers to hand out. "With each campaign, our riders are given information and materials, so that they can be informative when people stop and ask them about the product," said Dudich. The ad-bikes have been hired by corporations (Turner South, Whole Foods, Delta, for instance), nonprofit organizations and festivals. Bikes will be pedaling through the North Carolina furniture mart and launching a CD for Universal Records this spring. Mini Mobile Media helps customers design their campaigns and materials.
"For the Peach Bowl parade, we had riders dressed up as Clemson and Tennessee football players. Our riders said that chasing each other on the bikes with 30,000 people cheering was the most fun they'd ever had on any job," said Dudich.
Dudich recently added another four bikes. "At a time when other companies are laying off, it feels good to be creating jobs and investing in the community where we live," he said.
"So much advertising is thrown at people today, that unless you find a different way to get their attention, they aren't going to notice. I knew we had a winning concept when people began stopping us and asking to have their picture taken with the bike," said Dudich.
The business is at 1440 Dutch Valley Place, Suite 1250. Information: 404-810-0062 or