Entrepreneurship has been an important part of Russ’s life since graduating from Arizona State University with a B.S. in Broadcast Journalism and a minor in Business. His first job out of college was launching a new company. In 1999, Russ founded one of the first internet radio stations in the country called KnotRadio. KnotRadio was designed to connect independent music lovers across the country through the power of internet radio. A full six years before Pandora was founded, Russ had the vision to create and build KnotRadio into the premier internet radio station throughout the Southwest. In 2002, The Phoenix New Times voted KnotRadio “Best Alternative Radio Station” beating out traditional FM stations at the time. It was here, that Russ learned how to write a business plan.
In 2005, Russ had his second great idea. Playing location-based audio commercials on public transit sharing revenue with cash-strapped transit agencies. As a bus or train passes a local store, a 10-second audio and visual text scroll commercial plays alerting riders of specials and discounts at their favorite stores.
Again ahead of its time, Commuter Advertising was the second business plan Russ wrote. Commuter Advertising is now the fastest new media transit advertising company in the United states operating ten contracts in eight cities including Pace-Chicago, Jacksonville JTA, Greater Dayton RTA, Champaign-Urbana MTD, Kansas City ATA, Toledo RTA, and Rockland County NY Transit to provide audio advertising on buses reaching 100+million riders annually. Commuter Advertising is a multi-million dollar growing new transit media company and is currently negotiating with several transit agencies and is poised for significant growth in domestic and international markets in the next 18 months. Come check them out at commuter-advertising.com
The Business Model
Commuter Advertising generates revenue by creating, managing, and selling relevant and entertaining, 10-second audio advertising spots on trains and buses. Commuter Advertising utilizes technology onboard transit vehicles to trigger audio advertisements at strategic locations and times. For example, an automatic announcement plays as a bus passes a Fifth Third branch in Dayton: “At Fifth Third we believe in strengthening communities. Fifth Third offers free checking, interest checking, The One Account, student checking and more. Come visit the Fifth Third location as you exit this stop to join today.”
Commuter Advertising’s mission is to be the first and best short-form audio advertising provider on transit systems worldwide. Commuter Advertising creates symbiotic relationships between advertising clients, transit systems, and commuters alike. We provide a superior product by seamlessly delivering creative messages to targeted audiences at relevant locations. We sustain growth by offering results-oriented advertising, developing exceptional teams, and respecting the dynamic communities we serve. Commuter Advertising fulfills its mission through a full-service approach to delivery of the advertising program outlined in the Scope of Service diagram to the right. The Commuter Advertising team sells advertising media utilizing a local sales staff, creates copy, approves copy, produces audio in the production studio, uploads audio to the enunciation systems, implements audio on the vehicles, tracks audio and processes invoices to the advertisers. Enunciation systems already exist on most transit vehicles in the US to ensure compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act of 1990 (ADA) requirement to make stop announcements for the benefit of visually impaired riders. Commuter Advertising implements proprietary, patent-pending processes to utilize onboard enunciation systems to facilitate the audio advertising program.