Tom Giesken Gives Back to the Community through Billboards

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20 Years

When Tom Giesken founded Giesken Outdoor Advertising, 20 years ago, he couldn’t imagine where the industry would be now. He is grateful to be part of the change in advertising.

“Billboards right now are booming. Much of that has to do with the addition of digital outdoor advertising. With digital advertising, it’s possible to respond immediately. There are many advantages to the electronic side of billboard advertising, that really make it a very viable medium; especially with the “to- go” society that we have now.”

A Quick Response

Giesken Outdoor Advertising has static and digital billboards in Lima, Ottawa, and Bluffton, Ohio. Tom says one of the great things about a digital billboard, is the ability to accommodate the customer so quickly. “In the static billboard world, it takes weeks to get things ready, due to all the steps necessary to prepare the artwork. But [with a digital billboard] that isn’t the case. We can respond really quickly.”

If you drive past a GOA billboard, you’ll see advertisements of all kinds, including public service announcements and faith-based encouragement. For Tom, who is a Christian, business isn’t just about what he can get, but it’s also about giving back to the community. “I have a background with a lot of non-profits. I know what it’s like to try and run a non-profit organization. Budgets are tight and while the workers are great people, it’s typically a small crew doing a lot of work. I feel like non-profits need a leg up.” As a result, it’s very common to see promotional public service announcements for area non-profit organizations on all of Tom’s billboards. “Sometimes people are putting together a benefit event to help a family who is in need, and they don’t know how to get the word out.” Tom says. ”I can get the word out.” He loves the fact that he can help others by spreading a message on a billboard.

One of the non-profit organizations Tom supports is TV-44. Tom spent several years on the TV-44 board of directors, but even prior to that, TV-44 found a very important place in his heart. “I was personally changed through TV-44 in a dramatic way that changed my life and changed my family. I owe a lot to TV-44, so I’m so glad to be able to support them.”


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