Successful Billboards Around the World

Successful Billboards Around The World

Not all billboards are created equal.

The market and the audience of certain billboards must be taken into careful consideration in order to maximize their effectiveness. Because of this, billboards around the world are designed in different ways and seek to capture different audiences. We’ve compiled some examples of different successful billboards across the world and how they attempt to reach out to their respective audiences.

Asia

Successful Billboard Japan

Location: Japan

Billboard: Mt. Fuji’s Litter

Perhaps the most interesting aspect of this billboard is that it technically isn’t a billboard. Sure, it has the frame and structure of a successful billboard- but it’s missing the actual content of a billboard. Of course, the position and intended viewing angle of the board attempts to turn Mt. Fuji- as in the actual Mt. Fuji itself, not a drawing or a recreation of it, into the content. Given the cultural significance and sheer recognition of Mt. Fuji to its target audience, the effect is substantial.

Qik Billboard

Location: Philippines

Billboard: Skype Qik Live

Mobile devices and social media are huge in Asia. Whether it be a mobile game, the hottest new trending app, or just chatting with friends- the smartphone is a gateway into a world of almost endless entertainment. This company created a billboard which allows mall goers to record themselves on a nearby mobile phone installation and have their clip appear on the ad. This manages to make physical advertising media relevant to the many enthusiastic smartphone users in Manila.


Europe

England Broken Billboard

Location: England

Billboard: Broken Screen

How many times have you interacted with a person, only to see that have them pull out their phone and noticed that it was broken or that the glass was “spidered”? Usually this is pretty noticeable and just as disconcerting. By replicating this effect on the billboard, it catches the viewer’s attention and reminds them of their broken phone screen if they have one.

Denmark Ocean Levels Billboard

Location: Denmark

Billboard: Rising Ocean Levels

This one is interesting as the viewer has to see this billboard multiple times at different points in the day to get the full effect. Basically the awning on top of this billboard is supposed to cast a shadow- the shadow that is cast will change depending on the sun’s relation to the billboard. As the sun moves throughout the day the shadow will change in accordance, making it seem as if the water line on the board is moving upwards. Given that Denmark exists next to the Atlantic, rising ocean levels actually do affect them as they change the shoreline of the country.


North America

Adam Ruins Everything Billboard

Location: USA

Billboard: Adam Ruins Everything

Anyone who has spent long enough time on Facebook has probably seen a video snippet of Adam Ruins Everything, a new series dedicated towards dispelling half-truths and common misconceptions. While one can imagine that such an “in your face” ad might not be incredibly popular with all Americans, there’s no doubt that it’s effective in attracting the attention of its home audience.

Silberman's Fitness Billboard

Location: USA

Billboards: Silberman’s Fitness Center

Obesity is currently an issue which many Americans are confronted with. The US has some of the highest obesity rates across all countries. This ad is very relevant for its home market and does its best to grab the attention of obese Americans who are looking to slim down.


South America

Clean Air Billboard

Location: Peru

Billboard: Clean Air

The city of Lima located in Peru was estimated to have the highest pollution levels in all of South America back in 2012. This billboard was created in response- a billboard which actually takes the surrounding polluted air and purifies it, spitting back out fresh air. Since this billboard has gone up, the city has experienced a 50% reduction in pollution. As one can imagine, it was incredibly well received by it’s target audience due to the fact that it actively improved their lives.

Amphibious Billboard

Location: Argentina

Billboard: Amphibious

Who said billboards needed to be roadside? These billboards can be found either on the beachside, or out in the water themselves. Given that South America is known for its fair share of beautiful beaches, it only makes sense to play up to the region’s natural strengths and advertise in popular beach spots.


Australia

Porsche Billboard Advertisement

Location: Melbourne

Billboard: Porsche Ads

If you have enough money and the inclination to buy a Porsche, you probably feel good about the purchase and enjoy it when other people notice your car. The Porsche company itself understands this and put up an ad in Melbourne that can tell when a Porsche is approaching. The ad calls out Porsche drivers and compliments them on their car, making them feel good and adding a little bit of additional value to their purchase.

Cannon Safety Inspector Billboard

Location: Perth

Billboard: Cannon Safety Inspector

Finding the right person for the job can be tough, especially when the person you need has to have an incredibly specific and obscure skillset. This billboard put up in Perth might not be the fanciest, but is still entertaining and effective. The imagery gives off sentiment that would feel at home in a “Monty Python” skit, appealing to the sensibilities and humor of Australians.

Grammar Mistakes in Advertising

Grammar Mistakes in Advertising

It’s true, grammar mistakes can happen anytime. Unfortunately, that includes when creating billboards and advertisements, too! Here are our favorite examples of marketing messages with mistakes that made it past the editors. Next time you’re thinking of skipping the proofreading process, remember these hilarious examples of grammar mistakes in advertising. It might pay to take a look at your work just one more time!

A Tasty What?

Oops. We love an ice-cold Miller as much as the next person, but we can’t get behind this confusing billboard. We’re just curious how this simple phrase made it through the editing process all the way to a billboard without anyone noticing the misspelling of contradiction.

Don’t Write Copy In a New York Minute

This Reebok ad on the subway is a great reminder of why it pays to take your time. The copywriter missed an E in “everything”. It certainly highlights everything that’s wrong with rushing! This isn’t the worst typo we’ve ever seen, but it’s embarrassing for the company. Not to mention the cost of replacing these ads when they catch wind of the mistake!

Servers Are Unsung Heroes

One of the biggest problems with roadside business billboards like this is the lack of space… and spacing. It’s clear that this Days Inn board meant to commemorate Veterans. However, without a space in between the two lines, it seems like they’re commemorating hot breakfast servers. Hey, hot breakfast is pretty important, so maybe they have a point.

Stay In School, Kids

Perhaps even more embarrassing than a big company letting a typo slip through in their signage is a college! Cincinnati State College put up this billboard not realizing that an extra N had snuck into “technician.” Being a place of higher education, we’re sure they didn’t hear the end of it for quite a while.

I Don’t Think That Word Means What You Think It Means

While not a billboard, this car decal certainly gave us pause. We’re not sure who would print such an error-filled message or if the driver came up with it themselves. The incorrect form of but is in use here. Plus, the sentence should read “you’re abusing that privilege.” The irony speaks for itself.

No, This Is Not the Krusty Krab

Another case of no punctuation gave drivers a laugh on this roadside billboard. The signage of a popular food chain probably meant that Spongebob toys were finally at the location, and they were hiring managers. Unfortunately, these two different messages got combined. While amusing, this tends to look poorly on the business and would probably make quality manager candidates think twice. Plus, is Spongebob even qualified to hire managers?

Punctuation Saves Lives

This cautionary sign is designed to warn hunters that pedestrians use nearby trails. However, without the necessary grammar and punctuation, it seems to reference hunting the pedestrians themselves! While the sign may give you a good giggle, consider what a costly and dangerous mistake this could turn out to be. Please note that it is illegal to hunt pedestrians.

What’s In a Name?

This is a fairly harmless grammatical error compared to some of the others on this list. The problem with this sign is that we’re pretty sure this is a sports bar, not a bar belonging to Sport. There’s no need for the apostrophe. We wonder if anyone came in asking to talk to Sport recently?

I’m Suddenly Not Hungry…

This is the worst example of careless spelling and advertising mistakes we’ve seen. By leaving off the letter G, this hamburger special turned into a hamburger horror! This image from a popular American fast-food chain went viral, although we’re sure they fixed it pretty quickly. That’s just another reminder that proofreading your work is incredibly important. In the age of viral images and video, a mistake like this could bring you an awful lot of publicity you would rather avoid.

Digital Billboards vs Traditional Billboards

Digital Billboards vs Traditional Billboards

With the changing technology behind billboard advertising options, potential advertisers have a tough choice ahead of them. Does it make more sense to invest in a prime spot on an LED digital billboard, or purchase a traditional static display? Are all the bells and whistles necessary to increase your customer base, or is the basic idea behind a billboard enough for a company to see a return on their investment?

The truth is, both types of billboards have great merits. It depends on the prospective clients of the company, the placement of the board and the budget for advertising. With these factors, a traditional static billboard may prove more effective, or vice versa.

Digital Billboard Advertising

Attracting Clientele With Digital Billboards vs. Traditional Billboards

Digital billboards open up a world of options for changing screens, special effects, stopwatches and other features. The options for these extra frills are pretty limited on a traditional billboard. Companies attempting to capture their target audience should definitely consider this. For example, a younger demographic will have a shorter attention span for advertising, as studies on commercials and ads have revealed.

The 8 second slots on a 64 second loop that digital billboards have may be the perfect way to keep the message short and sweet. It will catch the eye without giving the viewer the chance to be dismissed.

However, older travelers are used to looking at billboards as a way to break up the monotony of the road. You’re more likely to snag the attention of an older demographic, plus they will have a chance to see the billboard clearly as they approach it before the screen changes. Depending on the age of your prospective client, this may be an important factor in the decision process!

Digital Billboard Outdoor Media

Placement Decisions in Digital vs. Traditional Billboards

Just as prospective customers are important to consider when examining advertising options, placement is key. While it may seem like a great idea to invest in a fast- moving digital billboard with all the bells and whistles, take a moment to decide on whether the location will work best for this approach.

The prime spot for a billboard to be located in? Where there’s a captive audience.

High traffic areas, where bumper to bumper traffic or frequent stop lights creates captive audiences, as do long stretches of road through the country with little else to look at.

Consider both locations. A frustrated individual caught in bumper to bumper traffic might find irritation receding with visual interest and something else to focus on. An LED digital billboard can offer this. However, an advertisement that stays static as a driver approaches may be appropriate for a highway billboard. After all, a restaurant or retail location off a nondescript exit doesn’t want a driver to miss seeing their ad when the screen changes!

Using Digital Billboards

Budget Decisions for Digital vs. Traditional Billboards

For obvious reasons, LED and digital advertising with its various effects might cost more than a traditional billboard. Although placement and style will also affect the cost, it’s important for a company to ensure the addition of this expense makes sense for the company.

If the company draws in more clients through strategically placed advertisements, investing in the best of the best in this segment makes sense.

However, if word of mouth and repeat clientele brings in more income for your business, a traditional approach may make more sense!

Digital Billboards vs. Traditional Billboards

The truth is, both styles of advertisement have valuable merits for a company to consider. Slight nuances in company marketing goals reveal which style will make more sense on an individual basis. Bottom line, strategic advertisement will improve your bottom line no matter which style you wind up selecting!

Great Outdoor Advertising

Great Outdoor Advertising

Outdoor advertising offers a wealth of opportunity for innovation, inspiration and the use of nature itself to create an effective promotion. Billboards in particular offer lots of space and options to promote companies, products, and services in eye-catching ways. From using witticisms, environmental initiatives and actual products, there are tons of options to convey your advertising message.

Here are five examples of great outdoor advertising and the stories behind each.

Sioo:x Wood ProtectionBoring Billboard Great Advertising

The text reads, “This is the world’s most boring billboard. We’re going to leave it here for 12 years, just to show how long our products last.”

Sioo:x Wood Protection and advertising agency Stendahls created this disarmingly simple yet effective example of outdoor advertising. Sioo:x creates a 100% environmentally friendly product that protects outdoor wood surfaces and provides a natural silvery-grey finish. The major claim to fame? The product lasts for twelve years. This inspired the design of the billboard, which is made from real Sioo:x-treated wood. The triple-sided billboard is booked for a whopping twelve years to prove the ability of the product to withstand the elements in Sweden!

Engineering for LifeGreat Outdoor Media Advertising

Engineering and planning firm Ramboll is responsible for this clever outdoor billboard. At first glance, it looks like a fairly straightforward advertisement on the side of an office building, but is really an environmental feat! The cupped hands on the billboard from Garbergs advertising agency are cupped to hold birds, which frequently land here. In the winter, scarce resources for local birds in Sweden means the population dwindles — but not if Ramboll has something to say about it! The cupped hands conceal a clever birdseed dispenser, which means birds that land here are guaranteed a meal.

We can’t imagine a better way for Ramboll to demonstrate their commitment to the environment!

The DreamGreat Billboard Advertising Idea

This meaningful example of outdoor advertising in Atlanta is designed to pay homage to Martin Luther King, JR. Specifically, the messaging behind the simple but impactful billboard is a celebration of his life and the dream that inspired a nation.

The dream began with his birth in 1929, and lives on today, even past his death in 1968.

Handicap InternationalHandicapped Statue Great Advertising

Not all great outdoor advertising strategies need to be on a billboard, as Handicap International and the Herezie group in Paris, France realized. In order to bring awareness to the long waiting lists for prosthetics, Handicap International made the daring move of outfitting the broken statues in Paris’ parks with prosthetic parts, as well as small informational signs.

The clever advertising ploy encouraged a double look for the passerby and valuable education on the issue.

Summer With Ikea

Great IKEA Outdoor Media

IKEA made light of the brief summer months in Belgium with a series of outdoor advertisements encouraging viewers to enjoy the brief period of summer and sunshine! The majority of the billboards are dark, stormy skies with a sliver of sunny skies and summery furniture arrangements from the retailer.

IKEA uses a clever play on humor and making fun of Belgian weather to make an impact.

Postmates Outdoor AdvertisementsPostmates Billboard

This saucy advertisement created by 180LA agency in Los Angeles is a great example of using a stop-and-stare! the tactic in outdoor advertising. Postmates delivery service superimposes wry text over a faint picture of a Moscow Mule and ties it to having vodka delivered to you.

A nod to the political drama of Russian interference in the 2016 election may take a moment for readers to process, but the resulting giggle and shock value will make readers consider Postmates twice.

Interested in more creative outdoor media examples? Check out our other article on some of our favorite Outdoor Advertising Ideas.

Glad Advertisement Fresh Billboard

A Fresh & Creative Glad Advertisement Billboard

It can be difficult to come up with unique and creative ideas for outdoor media ads as over time many of the ideas have been used.  The key to setting yourself apart is to think out side of the box – literally!

You can see what I mean by taking a look at these 15 creative billboard ads. These savvy marketing professionals didn’t let the boxed-boundaries of a billboard canvas dictate their service or product’s message. However, just envisioning something different won’t always lead to success.  To create a truly successful and exceptional billboard you must first think of your product/service and what need it fills.

This understanding of the message will be the foundation  you need to build some very innovative ideas on. I have found no better example of a “fresh” take on billboard marketing that promotes the product’s message then in this Glad advertisement for their outdoor billboard campaign!

Glad Fresh Billboard Advertisement

Glad Oranges Billboard

In this Glad advertisement campaign, the company uses its own product to show how much fresher it can keep your fruit then it would be without using Glad. It quite literally spells it out for you! This merger of creativity aligning with the purpose of the product creates for a truly outstanding outdoor media campaign.

Actually showing the use of a product for all the public to see is a great way to demonstrate it’s value and this Glad advertisement does a great job of doing that. They also chose a product that’s common and can be used by almost anyone so their billboard appeals to a wide audience. The ad needs little or no explanation behind it which is another key to a successful billboard ad, simplicity. People who see a billboard only have a few seconds to take in the message you are trying to portray so it’s crucial to get he message across in a quick and memorable way.

While these types of ads are undoubtedly very successful, not all of us have the ingenuity, resources, space or  wherewithal to complete such a marketing feat as the ones mentioned above. However to be successful, you don’t always have to break the mold. Even some simple creative properties can get you started to move you down tracks to a very successful and engaging billboard campaign!

The Fresh vs Rotten Glad Billboard Ad

If you follow these “Rules of Engagement” based on the foundation of promoting your product/services core message and spice it with some outside of the box creative thinking you have yourself the perfect recipe for success!

If you’re interested in creative outdoor media check out our article on outside the box marketing ideas for more inspiration.

Billboard Design Inspiration

Billboard Design Inspiration

Inspiration for effective marketing often comes from the most unexpected places, or fresh ways of looking at something. Even symbols one has seen their entire lives can take on a new meaning, or new technology can create ways to interact with the marketing world. Here are 5 examples of billboard design inspiration that came from unusual sources or clever re-imaginings.

Play-Doh: Open a Jar of Imagination

Hasbro Billboard Design

Annually every April, parent company Hasbro comes up with a new marketing technique just in time for Children’s Day. In 2018, the company announced the launch of the “Open a Jar of Imagination” Play-Doh campaign. This year, the company is championing encouraging children’s imagination and play. With this unique billboard structure, commonly featured in bus stops and eye-level billboards, the viewer is invited to use their own creativity to see beyond a basic can of play-doh to imagine what it could become. The limited-edition cans are surrounded by a clear plastic mold of children’s motifs like robots, airplanes and frogs.

The billboard is designed superbly well, and offers multiple levels of connection to the viewer. The clear plastic molds surrounding the vibrant can of Play-Doh showcase the product extremely effectively, while the sight of the can inspires nostalgia for adults and excitement for children. Finally the idealism behind it, in imagining what the product could be rather than just what it is, speaks to the hearts of clientele.

#BetterOff Billboard for Earth Day

Earth Day Billboard

Sometimes the most effective design for a billboard is the simplest. This was demonstrated over Earth Day, when Energy Upgrade California put together a campaign called #BetterOff. The concept of the campaign was simple and revolved around cutting down energy expenditure in the state. Accordingly, EUC asked McDonalds to turn the lights off in their billboards, which the burger chain complied with. During the day, a normal billboard featuring McDonalds products including a signature sandwich. However, as the sun set over California the board went dark and a special message was revealed on its surface, using glow in the dark tape. The message read, “This was an ad for McDonalds. Thanks to their partnership, it’s now an ad that saves energy.”

With low cost and maximum impact, this is a fantastic example of an outdoor advertising campaign. This approach in particular would work for a company with a special campaign or message. The gradual change captures viewer interest, and the simplistic glowing letters on a dark background grabs the eye and leaves room for thought.

“Follow the Arches” McDonalds

McDonalds Wayfinding Billboard

Canadian creative agency Cosette noticed that road signs for McDonalds all over Canada had inconsistent branding. While every sign incorporated the signature golden arches, the similarities ended there. In an effort to make branding more uniform and directions to each location more streamlined, McDonalds embraced providing directions with the golden arches themselves.

Using segments of the arches, such as the left bottom portion of the arch to directionally “point” to a McDonalds on the right, or the center of the arch to directionally signal to get off on the next exit, McDonald’s is able to simplify within their established branding and provide directions to their customers in a truly genius way. All it took was looking at the signature golden arches in a new way for some solid billboard design inspiration.

“The Mind Reading Billboard” Quebec City Magic Festival

Magic Festival Billboard

Just in time for the Quebec City Magic Festival, agency Lg2 installed an interactive billboard in a popular bus stop to promote the event. Using recently developed technology that is being used in major retail and restaurant chains to glean marketing data, the agency is bringing smiles to Canadian citizens.

A person will move closer to the digital billboard and be prompted to pick a card and keep it in their mind’s eye. The billboard will then reveal the card you were thinking of, “reading your mind.” Of course, there is advanced eye tracking technology behind the screen that follows the users gaze in order to accomplish this, but it brings joy and entertainment nonetheless. This outdoor media is a perfect example of using cutting edge billboard technology as inspiration to capture and engage viewers.

“Fun Magnet” by Fallsview Casino

Fallsview Billboard Fun Magnet

This past winter, Fallsview Casino and Resort in Niagara Falls commissioned an enormous billboard in Dundas Square. The enormous blue billboard towered 40 x 73 feet above the square and was entitled “Fun Magnet.” Installations of mannequins on parachutes, mannequins barely hanging onto full motorcycles and even a hot dog car were bolted onto the installation as though they had just been stuck to the board with a magnet. Prominently in the center was the logo for the casino.

The design for the billboard was truly incredible, with a high attention to detail and no expense spared to bolt full vehicles and mannequin fixtures to it. The attention to detail and 360 degree marketing experience didn’t end there. A local agency proceeded to make a supporting documentary for the making of the billboard, following three mannequin “celebrities” sharing their thoughts and respective journeys to Dundas Square.

Why Use Billboards to Advertise

Why Use Billboards to Advertise?

The billboard is a tried and true marketing tool. Archaeologists have found evidence of “ancient billboards” that date back thousands of years. They’re such a common part of life that they are easy to take for granted. But if you’re planning an advertising strategy, you can’t look past this firmly established option.

Billboards aren’t still in use because of habit alone; they’re in use because they get results. The fundamental concepts behind the billboard are still sound, and innovations have opened up new ways to use billboards for advertising purposes. Let’s look at some of the unique advantages that billboards offer over other marketing tools.

Digital Billboards

Billboards allow geographically targeted marketing.

One of the most important things to consider when crafting a marketing strategy is your target audience. You want to make sure that you’re getting your message in front of the right people. If you have brick and mortar location or a relatively limited service area, then you don’t want to waste money on ads that target people outside your area. You also want to make sure that the people in your service area hear your message. Billboards allow you to succeed on both counts.

When you put your message on a billboard, you know where people will be when they see your message. You can look at the road the billboard is on and get a good idea of where people will be coming from and going to when they see your message.

Black and White Billboards

Repetition drills in certain messages.

Some messages are better for billboards than others. People drive by billboards regularly, but they tend to go by them quickly unless the area is known for especially heavy traffic. Messages that are easy to digest and actionable are especially effective. A study asked people to discuss their engagement with billboards. Let’s look at their answers.

On a roadside billboard, have you ever…

Billboard Advertising Stats
Notice that simple, clear, and actionable information had the biggest impact. Billboards work on an almost subconscious level, their message sinking in as people drive past them day after day. Messages that are witty, time-sensitive, or related to immediate needs all have an especially big impact on drivers.

Billboards capture one of the few captive audiences left.

Today people are inundated with advertising from the moment they wake up until their head hits the pillow at night. But people also have more ways to avoid engaging with ads, when ads come on TV they look at their phone, and they can use programs to block ads from their phone. In this sort of environment, how do you make sure that people actually pay attention to your ads?

There is one place where people have to keep their eyes on the world around them, and that’s when they’re in their car. If you really want people to pay attention to your ad you need to catch them when they’re stuck in traffic. Strategically placed billboards with the right outdoor advertising ideas allow you to do just this.

Drivers See Billboards

Time the average American spend driving:

  • 17,600 minutes per year
  • 48 minutes per day

That’s 48 minutes a day where people are staring out the front window of their vehicle. Beyond that, it’s time when they might be thinking about your message. After drivers see your message, they will have the rest of their drive to process it. And this can happen every time they drive past your billboard!

Digital billboards have opened new avenues.

Many people underestimate the power of billboards because their perception of the medium is stuck in the past. Digital billboards have brought this advertising tool into the 21st century, allowing billboards to take full advantage of the latest technology.

Instead of using one permanent image, digital billboards are essentially large computer screens that can be programmed to display messages in a range of innovative ways. Things can be as simple as switching between images periodically so that multiple advertisers can cut costs by sharing a single billboard, or they can get more complex by utilizing animation and real-time updates.

Billboard Effectiveness

People who can recall seeing a digital ad in the last month:

  • Place-based: 70%
  • Online: 43%

These figures were taken from a study based on self-reporting, but there is still a clear takeaway. When people see a message in person, they’re more likely to recall it then when they see it online.

Billboard advertising stands above the rest.

Billboards occupy a unique place in the advertising landscape because of their physical presence. They aren’t ephemeral like radio, TV, and internet advertising. They stand on the side of the road, their message emblazoned across a giant canvas. There is a power in the billboard that can’t be recreated using any other advertising tool.

Billboard advertising isn’t a magic solution to every marketing need, but when used correctly it can do things that no other method can. If you have a clear and actionable message that you want to convey to a captive audience, then a billboard might be just the thing you need.

Outdoor Advertising Ideas

Outdoor Advertising Ideas

When done correctly outdoor advertising can be one of the most impactful forms of marketing there is. The right advertisement can act as a monument to your brand that exists in the physical space your clients live their lives in. Outdoor advertising is harder to ignore than many other forms of advertising, but to achieve the maximum impact, it should be creative. A basic billboard might get your message across, but if you really want people to stop and think about what you have to say, then you need to present you.

Donatos Pizza Billboard

Consider the power of cross-promotion.

Outdoor advertising really takes off when it plays with people’s expectations. We’ve all seen two advertisements placed side by side, but they never interact. This unique ad from pizza brand Donatos plays with expectations to create a hilarious and eye-catching ad. It’s also worth noting that this sort of idea opens up all sorts of opportunities for cross-promotion. Creative companies can team up to create a billboard that delivers twice the punch at half the cost. That’s thinking outside the box.

Mars Tongue Billboard

Turn two billboards into one ad.

Here we have another advertisement that is created by combining two separate images. It takes full advantage of three-dimensional space to create an image that is impossible to ignore. It also presents a unique and vivid take on the subject matter, one look at that stretched out tongue is enough to tell you that it’s licking one cold candy bar.

Fedex Creative Billboard

Convert a vehicle into a moving billboard.

Drawing comparisons between your business and your competitor is always tricky, but FedEx found a brilliant way to turn their delivery trucks into ads with a cheeky message. A simple decal turns an average truck into a humorous and attention-grabbing jab at the company’s competition. Just putting your company’s logo on your vehicles might be fine for some, but there’s power in going beyond what’s expected of you.

Tailgating Billboard

Go beyond the flat image.

Take full advantage of the fact that outdoor advertisements don’t need to be completely flat! It might cost extra to add depth to a billboard, but if you’ve got a great idea, then the return on investment can be tremendous. People see flat ads all day long, give them something that comes out at them, literally!

Electronic Billboard Ad

Use electronic ads to tell a story.

Any one of these images would make a fine advertisement on its own, but when you see all three images in sequence, you get a message that is more than the sum of its parts. All too often people are content to purchase just one of three slots on a board like this and hope that they’ll stand apart from their competition. This ad shows that this sort of technology can be used to convey simple but powerful messages using sequential storytelling.

Hotwheels Billboard

Build off of what’s already there.

When creating an outdoor advertisement, you don’t have to build everything from scratch! By working with whatever is already in place you can increase your impact without dramatically increasing your budget. Look at this ad and imagine how much more Hot Wheels would have had to pay if they wanted to put up an entire fake bridge. But instead, they used an existing structure and made a big point at a relatively low cost.

Mini Outdoor Advertising Idea

Put up ads that work with people around them.

This ad from Mini Cooper does a great idea of telling people that their vehicle is more spacious than it looks at first glance. It does this by taking advantage of the space it is in and the way people exist within that space. When planning your next outdoor ad, you need to think about how it will exist in the chosen space and how people will interact with it.

McDonalds Creative Billboard Idea

Use technology to remind people that it’s time for them to pay you a visit.

McDonald’s gets a lot of business by staying open around the clock, but not all of their locations is open around the clock. This is tricky to deal with, when people are up late at night they might be hungry but they don’t want to waste time visiting a restaurant that isn’t open. This sort of message encourages people to pay McDonalds a visit while assuring them that they’re open and ready for business.

For more outdoor advertising ideas check out our other article on the best outdoor advertising campaigns.

Advantages of Digital Billboard Advertising

Advantages of Digital Billboard Advertising

The billboard is changing. The use of computer screens as advertisements has been around for a while but in recent years billboard-size digital displays have reached a new level of affordability. Digital billboards aren’t just for high-end brands with big pockets; it’s time for everyone to consider whether or not digital billboards are right for their marketing campaign. Digital billboards offer a range of benefits over their traditional counterparts and in this article, we’ll look at each specific advantage of digital billboard advertising with some examples that show the power of this cutting-edge advertising tool.

Target Pollen Billboard

Digital billboards can update in real time

Thanks to the internet people have different expectations about how advertising works. They spend hours staring at screens that display advertisements tailored to them. Ads today know our names, our locations, and what we’ve been looking for. Digital billboards might not be able to reach this level of customization, but they can still utilize the latest technology to deliver a timely message. This is one of the major advantages of digital billboard advertising.

Look at this digital billboard advertisement from Target. It’s a powerful reminder of allergy season that utilizes the latest pollen count. It’s a brilliant combination of useful information and powerful marketing that is sure to stand out in a world flooded with advertisements.

Fox Time Sensitive Billboard

Digital billboards can display time-sensitive messages

Have you ever gotten excited by an ad for an event only to realize that its time had already come and passed? Many companies waste money paying for advertisements that will outlive the events they are advertising. Digital ads can cut down on waste by automatically switching over at certain times.

Take this advertisement for the TV show “Hell’s Kitchen” as an example. Traditionally advertisements for a weekly TV show would have to run all week long, even though the show wouldn’t be on six out of the seven days. But with digital billboards, a TV channel advertising on a billboard can make sure that it always advertises the shows that viewers can watch immediately after they see the ad. It’s a great way to increase the ad’s return on investment.

Digital Billboard Strategy

The same digital billboard can display two entirely different advertisements just minutes apart from one another

A traditional billboard can only display one advertisement at a time, and it can take hours of work to transition from an old ad to a new message. This isn’t the case with digital billboards. A digital billboard can be loaded up with multiple messages that it cycles between on a set schedule. Companies that advertise on digital billboards can buy the perfect amount of advertising for their needs and budgets. This means that there’s no reason to pay extra to monopolize an entire billboard if you think you can do just as well sharing the space. Say goodbye to one-size-fits-all ad buys!

Dogers Digital Billboard

Digital billboards can convey a sense of urgency

Most people are procrastinators by nature. If they can put something off, they will. Companies lose sales all the time because of this. Customers might plan on making a purchase, but they decide to wait until later and end up never spending a dime. To overcome this tendency it’s important to create a sense of urgency, and digital billboards are uniquely equipped for this task.

Just look at this advertisement for Dodgers Baseball. It has a timer ticking down, which can have a big psychological impact on those who pass. It reminds them that time isn’t unlimited, that they need to act quickly if they don’t want to miss their chance to see a game. A traditional billboard might be updated every day, but a digital billboard has the advantage of ratcheting up the urgency with updates by the hour, minute, or even second.

Digital Billboard Advantages

Digital billboards can engage with customers on a grand scale

One of the best ways to ensure repeat business is by building a deeper connection with your customers. In the past billboards used to be a highly impersonal type of advertising but digital billboards can facilitate interaction between you and your customers. Just check out this campaign by Pattison Onestop and Spacing Magazine. They asked for people to tweet out love letters to Canadian cities and then broadcast those letters across the cities. Traditional billboards might have been able to display a single message, but the digital billboards could display hundreds of messages a day.

People got to see their own words on billboards across the country, news outlets got a patriotic story to tell, and Pattison’s shopping centers gained plenty of fantastic PR. It’s the sort of marketing-win that digital billboards enable.

bMedia Digital Billboard

The world is moving quickly and billboards need to keep up with the change of pace

Information travels faster than ever in the age of smartphones. Traditional static billboards were invented in a world where news traveled at the speed of the newspaper. Today even 24/7 cable news channels are too slow for media consumers who are hooked into a constant stream of social media messaging. If you want to keep up in this environment, then you need the sort of flexibility that digital billboards can offer.

Spotify 2018 Funny Ads

Spotify Funny Billboard Ads

Billboards are a popular advertising medium because they’re a great way to get a simple message to a lot of people quickly and affordably. They can target people based on the location where they will be viewed, and they often have a captive audience who has no choice but to notice the sign.

But, in the internet age, are they becoming less useful? Do we depend on electronic targeting and digital technology to get our point across?

No, not with a little creativity. In fact, one recent campaign of Spotify funny ads is a perfect example of how outdoor advertising can be even more successful than something posted online.
Spotify Funny Ads

Thanks 2016, it’s been weird

In November of 2016, the online music streaming service Spotify launched a global campaign of funny ads using billboards. Each sign contained messages that were localized for the markets where they appeared. The messages were crafted using Spotify data to find what people were listening to, and they often matched with specific and memorable events that occurred that year. Then they added in a strong mix of humor to make sure they were entertaining, and splashed them proudly on billboards.

Some messages were specifically for the local audience, such as this one in the UK:

“Dear 3,749 people who streamed “It’s The End Of The World As We Know It” the day of the Brexit vote, Hang in there.”

Others showed where the data came from, but still could work anywhere in the world, like:

“Dear person in L.A. who listened to the “Forever Alone” playlist for 4 hours on Valentine’s Day, you ok?”

Spotify 2018 Funny Ads

Indirect Brand Advertising

One thing you’ll notice about these Spotify funny ads are that they don’t say anything specific about what Spotify does. They all refer to people listening to songs, so they imply that the company has something to do with playing music, but it doesn’t have any other information about why you would want to use the service. They assume that everyone who would use them to stream music already knows about their offering and how it works, or is smart enough to pop the name into a search engine.

This saves valuable real estate on the sign to show the new look of their brand, and it doesn’t distract from the humor.

Funny Music Ads Spotify

Showing Their Fun Side

One of the biggest reasons that companies go with ads that deliver some sort of emotion is because they give personality to a brand. This works in the case of Spotify, because one of their main purposes is to offer entertainment. These signs weren’t music to your ears, but they probably caused you to laugh a little bit. This adds to an overall image of a company that will make you happy, and you’ll subconsciously remember that when choosing which website to get your music from.

Funny Spotify Billboard Advertisement

Relevant to the Time

Another brilliant aspect of this campaign was how it was relevant to the time. 2016 was a busy year in the world, and there were many celebrity deaths, unexpected political situations, multiple international crises, and a lot of other difficult or surprising events. Social media users had become used to blaming everything on 2016, and this campaign played right into that – in a non-depressing way. It even managed to take all that distress and turn it into something funny.

Billboards Going Viral

One of the common concerns about billboards is that they’re not as likely to go viral as something that’s easy to share online. This campaign helped prove that not only are billboards not outdated, but the number of digital cameras out there may make them more likely to go viral than an image saved on a website. A campaign has to be made correctly, but physical objects can be less likely to get lost in the noise.

Spotify Hilarious Billboard

Big Data in a New Way

Speaking of going viral, this Spotify funny ads campaign used another buzzword that’s popular in the internet era: big data. Many companies are gathering and cataloging massive amounts of data from their customers, and most are still trying to figure out what to do with it. This information is a dream for marketers and advertisers (especially in the online space), but this is a creative use of it that many hadn’t thought of. Big data in an ironic way really stood out.

Brexit Spotify Billboard

Grab Attention with Your Billboards!

This example with Spotify is just one of many recent campaigns where outdoor advertising was still going strong in the 21st century. It’s often a good idea to balance it out with the other advertising media you use, but it can be a strong way to boost sales and build brands in many different industries.

Reach out to us if you have any ideas you’d like to discuss seeing on a sign, and we’ll be overjoyed if it’s a funny campaign like this that will spread the laughs around!