amazing billboard ads

Amazing Billboard Ads

We are constantly bombarded by messages enticing us to buy something. Look at a website and the next thing that pops up is an array of ads for that item from competing companies. Open your e-mail and there are full-color, animated sales flyers whether you asked for them or not. Ads come in many forms including posters, window displays, newspaper and magazine ads, t-shirts, web, and social media, but the most effective type is still in the form of amazing billboard ads

Advertising is big business. This year it topped $100 billion dollars in the USA alone. Outdoor or billboard advertising accounted for 7% of that. 

Some billboard ads appeal to certain potential clients. Others garner more attention from a different niche market. But what, exactly, makes an outdoor effective? The most amazing billboard ads follow certain designs and creative elements, and we’re giving you some intriguing information on them below. 

best types of billboards

Why are Outdoor Ads so Effective?

Billboard ads have been proven to be highly effective. Who can resist reading a big, bold billboard or a colorful ad the full length of a city bus? It’s difficult to miss an ad that covers an entire wall. 

Outdoor ads are limited only by the imagination of advertisers. Have you noticed ads in cab windows, on bus shelters, affixed to park benches?  You will find them on kiosks in shopping malls, plus trains, in airports, and even front lawns. Most commonly, however, outdoor ads occupy space nearest to roads in the form of billboards and with good reason. Every day, people commute t0 work, home, stores and more, and within that drive time, they either knowingly or unknowingly pass by a captivating billboard. 

We spend more time away from home than we do inside so it follows that outdoor signs catch our eye and lure us to buy. Still, what makes amazing billboard ads effective?

Outdoor Signs Have High Impact

Where magazine or newspaper ads have to capture a viewer to the medium, outdoor advertising requires no such invitation. It’s right there. It’s in your face. It’s part of your environment. You can’t close it like the newspaper, shut it off like the TV, or shut it down by clicking your mouse. 

You have no control over whether you view it. The longer and the more often you see it, the greater the impact.

types of outdoor ads

Outdoor Ads Grab Your Attention

Outdoor ads stand alone. They aren’t competing with other ads the way TV, internet, and newspaper ads do.

Outdoor ads are often visible from afar. They stay in your visual range for several minutes. Outdoor advertisers strive for color, movement, and creativity that make them attention-grabbing and memorable even long after you’ve seen them.

Outdoor Advertising is Surprisingly  Cost-Effective

Studies on return on investment (ROI) for outdoor billboard ads found that outdoor advertising is very cost-effective when compared with other types of advertising. The reason, again, is that they’re hard to ignore and they even subconsciously entice buying decisions. 

creative billboard ideas

Outdoor Advertising Reaches A Wide Audience

If you’re trying to reach a wide niche market, outdoor advertising is an excellent marketing platform for your brand, company, organization, or enterprise. Outdoor advertising has a broad audience. Being outdoors, businesses have the eyes of thousands of potential consumers. Many of them are hard to reach in other advertising media forms. 

Where Do People Shop? 

The short answer is: Not where they used to shop. Surveys discovered that over seventy percent of things purchased are not bought in retail centers and shopping malls. When it comes to advertising, location is crucial. Outdoor advertising is the most effective medium when it comes to making an impact on shoppers before they purchase.

Consumers Like Outdoor Ads

Ads on TV are hated! DVR companies make a  fortune on providing the viewing public with a means of ignoring ads. On the other hand, outdoor ads are actually popular with consumers. An Australian study proved that locals and tourists preferred buses with ads than those without them. Over a third of American drivers said they welcomed the distraction of billboard ads.

unique billboard ads

Outdoor Ads Combine with Other Advertising 

Outdoor advertising need not stand alone. It has been shown to combine well with other types of advertising. The result is a heightened impact on both types of ads.

Outdoor Ads Offer a Fresh Message

Thanks to modern technology, outdoor advertising gives brands and enterprises a novel, creative, attention-grabbing approach. It’s a way to reach potential consumers in an open, fresh appealing way.

Why are Billboards one of the Best Types of Outdoor Ads?

On average, people spend more than twenty hours a week in their cars. Here are some interesting statistics on commuters by state. For billboards, these drivers and their passengers are a captive audience.

Amazing billboard ads are big, bright, visually appealing, easy-to-read as you pass without undue driver distraction. Moreover, studies have shown that these messages leave a lasting visual impression.

billboard advertising effectiveness

Best Copy for Outdoor Ads

When it comes to compelling copy for an amazing billboard, you have to remember that you are competing with the driver’s smartphone, GPS, radio, and morning coffee. So, your message needs to be big, bold and easy to read in passing. It also needs to be clever but not cutesy.

A good rule of thumb in copy is six words or less. Six seconds is the usual time spent passing a billboard. Also, consider the words and their length. 

You want to get noticed but not be a distraction whether you are a traditional roadside billboard or a mobile billboard on a bus or truck side.

You’re not trying to get a response. You want to entice a potential consumer, provide information, and get your brand out there. Billboards promote products and support brand campaigns.

Best Visuals

Good visuals are big, bright, bold. They elicit a feeling from the viewer and provide a lasting memory of what they have seen for only a few seconds. Thanks to computer-aided design and vinyl sign software packages these visuals can be created effectively for both stationary and mobile billboards.

eye catching billboard ads

Outdoor Ads Faux-Pas

Not all billboards are effective. Here are some things to avoid when designing a billboard:

Ineffective Use of Color

Thanks to computer-aided design the sky’s the limit when it comes to color. Your ad must be attractive to grab the viewer’s attention and provide a lasting visual.

eye catching billboard ads

Hard-to-Read Fonts

Choose fonts carefully. Stylized fonts, curly print, thin letters are a bad choice on billboards. Aim for easy and fast reading format.

Too Much Text

As cosmetics maven, MaryKay, said of women’s makeup, “Less is more!” Avoid large chunks of text. Six words is a good rule of thumb.

Poor Placement

As with real estate, in the world of billboards placement is a major decision. Not selecting the right location can be the demise of your add no matter how effective the design. 

Amateur Design

Hire a professional. Many companies hoping to save a dollar try to use a software package to create their own billboards. The results are often poor if not disastrous. The money spent on professional billboards more than pays for itself in return on investment.

Let us help. bMedia billboards have proven customer satisfaction and results.

Top 5 Beaches in Puerto Rico

Top 5 Beaches in Puerto Rico

When it comes to selecting the top 5 beaches in Puerto Rico, it’s hard to make a choice because Puerto Rico has many fine beaches. There’s also the definition of “best”. Criteria might include any or all of most scenic, safest, best sand, clearest water, highest quality of water or sand, easiest access, amenities, cleanest, lack of crowds, family-friendly, best artists’ location; lifeguard on duty, most accessible by public transportation, most user friendly…and the list goes on! Islands of Puerto Rico website made their own list of Puerto Rico’s best beaches, too. 

Having considered a long list of criteria here are the overall picks of the top 5 beaches in Puerto Rico.

1. Flamenco Beach

flamenco beach puerto rico

Location: North area of Isla de Culebra
Getting there: Arrive on the island via ferry or plane. If you’re renting a vehicle, head down the main road 251 from the ferry dock. Follow the road north until it ends. Taxis also offer a direct shuttle to the beach.
Features: Perfect for families. Water is calm and safe for beginner swimmers. The beach also offers all accommodations including snorkeling, beach activities, outdoor showers, bathrooms, and more.
Scenery: Only place in Puerto Rico where an Old Navy tank is parked on the sand.

Flamenco Beach, on the island of Culebra, has been named one of the world’s best beaches. Its waters are clear and clean. The gentle waves change color with the time of day moving from turquoise to deep emerald as the sun moves in the sky. The while-sand, crescent-shaped beach is surrounded by rolling, green hills and lush tropical plants. It’s little wonder that artists and photographers try to capture the beauty of this changing landscape in their work.

Those who want to build sandcastles will find the white fluffy sands of Flamenco Beach the perfect medium. Go snorkeling. Collect shells. This safe, family-friendly beach has lots of things to see and do. You can even buy food there.

Most of the year this little piece of paradise isn’t crowded. Avoid holidays and the summer months and Flamenco is practically yours for those long lazy beach strolls or just for sitting and watching the changing flora and fauna. If you’re searching for a romantic spot to propose this is the place.

To get to the beach, catch a ferry from San Juan at Fajardo. It’s a spectacular, ninety-minute ride to Culebra. The ferry travels this route several times a day. Arrive several hours before departure. You can also a thirty-minute flight from Isle Grande Airport.

2. Luquillo Beach

best beaches in puerto rico

Location: Public beach located on Porta Antillas (the east coast region) of the main island. A 45-minute drive east from San Juan International Airport.
Getting there: From San Juan International Airport enter expressway PR-26 toward Carolina/Fajardo for 4.2 miles. Take Toll Expressway PR-66 for 12 miles. Take Exit highway PR-3 for 7.5 miles.
Features: Perfect for families and water is calm for children. It’s often very crowded during tourist months.
Scenery: Beautiful beach and scenery renowned for its food kiosks and views of the Rain Forest.

Luquillo Beach is just east of San Juan. It’s not a beach in the traditional sense of the word. Luquillo Beach is actually a plantation of coconut palms. These huge trees provide shade for over a mile of white sparkling sand which forms the beach area. 

Very popular with tourists and San Juan locals, this public beach has clean bathrooms, showers, and food buildings. The beach is also accessible for mobility challenged. 

On the east coast of the beach is La Selva. This cove is one of the best surfing locations in Puerto Rico. It’s worth the walk.

To get to Luquillo Beach you can take a taxi, a tour bus, rent a car or bicycle or you can use the shuttle from San Juan.

3. La Chiva Beach

puerto rico best beaches

Location: Southern coast of the center of Isla de Vieques.
Getting there: Quickest way is from Vieques to take a direct taxi or shuttle
Features: Water is calm and shallow for swimming of all stages. Snorkeling, scuba diving, and other activities are available.
Scenery: Proclaim the most beautiful beach in Puerto Rico with contrasting blue waters and pristine sand. 

Voted the best beach in Puerto Rico in our previous poll.  Located on Isla de Vieques, La Chiva is also known as Playa La Chiva. This is the perfect spot for snorkeling and long walks. Often included in the best ten beaches in the Caribbean, La Chivahas mesmerizing sands and fascinating blue waters.

During the time the Navy was stationed on La Chiva, they nicknamed it “blue beach” because of the unusually bright blue of its crystal, clear water. It is an artist’s and photographer’s dream because of the changing hues of blue as you move along the beach.

Most beachgoers head to the east end of the beach to snorkel. But, if you want solitude and space to paint the turquoise waters then stay at the less frequented west end.

La Chiva is very family-friendly. Even in the winter months, waves are small and gentle. From a glass-bottom boat or snorkeling, you can see grass beds that form homes for the colorful fish that dart about delighting the children. There are gazebos for beachgoers’ use.

The best way to get to La Chiva is to rent a car or book a seat on a tour bus. You could also get to know one of the locals and offer to pay for the gas.

From San Juan, you can take Cape Air to Vieques. On an eight-seater plane, it’s a thrill ride. Once there, it’s a short taxi ride to the beach.

You need to pack your own food, water, sunblock because there are no amenities.

4. Crash Boat Beach

crash boat beach puerto rico

Location: Puerto Rico’s northwest coast
Getting there: From the San Juan area, take PR-22 west to PR-2 west. Turn right onto Road 107, and then left onto Road 458. Follow the signs and traffic. 
Features: Surfing, paddleboarding, water skiing, and other water activities are popular here. Water is ideal for sport. 
Scenery: The are remnants of a crashed ship just off the shoreline. Pristine blue waters are very much apart of this beach, as well.  

A trip to Crash Boat Beach is worth it for the history alone. Located on Puerto Rico’s northwest coast, Crash Boat Beach is midway between Ramey Air Force Base and Aguadilla. Once used to rescue aircrews that had crash-landed, Crash Boat Beach still has some of the old piers. There are two large white sad public beaches where people can swim and sunbathe.

Crash Beach is famous for its surfing and bodyboarding. You can also scuba or snorkel around the old pier where fish dart in and out.

Paddleboarding, Jet skiing, and water skiing are also popular. You can rent a motorboat and all the equipment you need for water sports.

If you want to build sandcastles or walk on the beach, gentle palm trees provide shade.

The sunsets of Crash Beach are spectacular. That’s why artists and photographers linger here as night falls.

To get there you can book a tour that includes this stop or you can rent a car.

5. Buye Beach

buye beach puerto rico

Location: Puerto Rico’s western beaches, located in Cabo Rojo
Getting there: Take the exit to Cabo Rojo, keep straight until you pass McDonald’s. At the traffic light, make a right. When you arrive at the T, take a left toward “Playa Buye” on Rt. 307. 
Features: Gentle waves, beautiful landscape, water, and sand. It has plenty of features like grilling areas, outdoor facilities, and gazebos. A great place to relax!
Scenery: This beach is very popular with the locals of Puerto Rico and a fun place for quality family time. 

Also known locally as Playa Buye this beach in Cabo Rojo is a favorite of the locals and often voted one of Puerto Rico’s western region beaches.

Its crystal, clear water is so warm it is like taking a bath. While there is a bar at the beach, they do allow beachgoers to bring a cooler. Families wade in the calm blue waters. The white-sand beach is in pristine condition.  

It’s not easy to find Buye Beach. It is tucked away. To get there, you can rent a car and park it at the rental property. Then the best way is to ask a local to help you find it. 

Besides breathtaking scenery and gentle waves, the beach has several attractive amenities including a clean bathroom, gazebos, a gift shop, a pool room, and a cafeteria.

On weekdays, the beach is not crowded. However, on weekends and summer months it is busier. Take a walk and find your own little spot on this beautiful beach.

There are actually two different beaches. On the west side, water is quieter and gentle for children. It’s a safe, relaxing, family-friendly location.

 

We had hundreds of submissions from our last post about which is the best beach in Puerto Rico. We recorded all the responses and determined the following list as the top 5 beaches in Puerto Rico. Now we need your help to vote for one of the options below so we can know which is the #1 best beach in Puerto Rico. Thanks for your participation!!

 

 

how billboard advertising started

History of Billboard Advertising

The first billboards were invented in the 1830s. They became a popular form of advertising in the 1860s. Then, as the 19th century came to a close, the proper format of a billboard was defined and their popularity skyrocketed.

history of billboard advertisements

In the 1830s, a man named Jared Bell created some of the very first billboards. These billboards advertised circus acts like Barnum And Bailey. The billboards were often large posters, displaying colorful pictures. They emphasized unique features and promotional elements for each of their upcoming shows. 

The 1860s saw a major shift in billboard advertising. Businesses were able to purchase outdoor space to utilize for billboard display. Soon enough, advertisers began taking advantage of the new laws and regulations, setting up different billboards and experimenting with their own forms and creatives. They were often hand-drawn or hand-painted and labor-intensive. 

Two things happened in the last four decades of the 19th century:

  1. Billboards became more popular, which led to the founding of various billboard associations. Some of the most famous from this period was The International Bill Posters Association and the Associated Bill Posters’ Association. They helped launch billboard advertising, as a concept, nationwide.
  2. As these associations became more prominent, standards for billboard advertising began to subtly change. In 1889, the Paris Expo revealed the first-ever twenty-four sheet billboard. That twenty-four sheet format became the standard format for billboards everywhere.  
  • Jared Bell created some of the first billboards for famous circus acts in the 1830s
  • Nw legislation allowed advertisers to purchase outdoor space for advertising purposes in the 1860s
  • The International Bill Posters Association and Associated Bill Posters’ Association  introduced billboards to other advertisers
  • The first twenty-four sheet billboard was shown at the Paris Expo, and then the World’s Columbian Exposition.
  • This twenty-four sheet format became the standard billboard

When Billboards Took Over Advertising

a history of billboards and signs

The Model T was one of the first affordable cars. It changed the United States, and ushered in an era of cheap, low-cost manufacturing. As more people became reliant on cars, roads and highways were soon built to support them. Soon enough, advertisers realized that setting up billboards on roads and highways was an excellent advertising strategy.

After the introduction of the Model T, cars quickly became the main form of transportation. Older methods of transportation railroads and horses, mainly became a secondary option. 

Due to this influx of cars, cities were forced to adapt their infrastructure to accommodate the growing automobile market. This lead to the creation of better roads and highways. Shortly after, advertisers realized that this would become prime advertising real estate.

While billboards were always a popular form of advertising throughout the 20th century, it wasn’t until the creation of the Interstate Highway System that billboards became extraordinarily successful. The Interstate Highway System — a system that connects the different states together through safe and efficient roads, spanning 49,000 miles — was a goldmine of display opportunities. 

history of billboard advertising

Hundreds of businesses used this method of advertising to their advantage. Most of these businesses set up conventional billboards. But, there were other businesses for example, Burma Shave, Coca-Cola, and Palmolive that realized that by designing humorous and captivating signs, you could entertain bored drivers.

  • The popularity of the first cars, Model T, lead to the development of better roads and highways
  • Advertisers realized that these roads and highways could be used to set up billboards
  • The Interstate Highway System lead to billboards becoming one of the most popular forms of advertising
  • Businesses started using billboards to create advertisements that entertained drivers

The Highway Beautification Act

history of billboard advertising

The placement of billboards on the Interstate Highway System was largely unregulated. There were very few restrictions regarding the size, spacing, placement, and design. This lack of regulation changed in 1965.

The Interstate Highway System brought a great deal of prosperity to the billboard industry. Billboards were extremely popular, and the businesses and products they were advertising even more.

In 1965, the Highway Beautification Act was passed. The Highway Beautification Act set limitations on the number of billboards that could be placed along highways, as well as regulations on factors such as size, spacing, and lighting.

While some in the industry thought that this would put an end to billboards, it didn’t. Instead, billboard designs complied with the newly formed regulations. 

  • The Interstate Highway System and the placement of billboards was largely unregulated
  • This changed in 1965 when the Highway Beautification Act was passed
  • Advertisers were forced to comply with various regulations regarding spacing, size, and lighting
  • Billboards remained popular, but they had to change and develop in order to comply with these new regulations

The Future of Billboard Advertising

Today, billboards still comprise a large percentage of the advertising market. Instead of going with traditional billboards, though, advertisers are using digital methods. Digital billboards bring less work and fewer overhead costs while delivering a more vivid and engaging form of advertising.

digital billboard advertising

To some, billboards are seen as a “relic of the past”. For advertisers, though, this is far from the truth. As of today, billboards comprise 66% of the “out of home” advertising market. Many of these billboards are digital.

Digital billboards require less work than traditional billboards. They also offer more possibilities for creativity and experimentation.

Instead of shipping an advertisement to a billboard company weeks in advance, all that’s needed is a file. If you want to experiment with different creatives and ideas including, colors, fonts, styles and sound effects for your advertisement, you can do so easily. If something doesn’t work out, simply press a few buttons to make desired changes.

Along with that, digital billboards and other outdoor media are starting to integrate sensors and cameras. These allow for more dynamic and engaging advertisements that directly interface with whoever is viewing the ad.

While the billboard advertising form will continue to shift and change, one thing is certain: billboards are here to stay. 

  • Billboards still comprise a significant portion of the advertising market
  • The traditional billboard was replaced with their digital counterparts
  • Digital billboards require less maintenance than traditional billboards
  • Sensors and cameras are being used to create interactive ads

Billboard Advertising in Puerto Rico

history of billboard advertising

bMedia is a Puerto Rico local outdoor media company specializing in billboard advertising. While we’ve come a long way since hand-painted signage and extremely labor-intensive displays, we are happy to continue servicing one of the oldest forms of advertising. This advertising strategy has been proven and methodically implemented for companies across the nation. We offer our support and creativity for businesses exclusive to Puerto Rico. Contact us for pricing and additional information.

puerto rico's best beaches

What is the Best Beach in Puerto Rico?

So you want to know what the best beach in Puerto Rico? No matter where you travel, locals and tourists alike will claim a beach to be the best in the state, or county. All have reasons for their claim. Many are based on their own experiences.

Residents and tourists in Puerto Rico are no different. There is much controversy about how many beaches this island nation actually has. Some sources claim there are anywhere from three hundred to well over one thousand Puerto Rican beaches. The Government of Puerto Rico notes that there are 258 by their official calculations.

Best Beach in Puerto Rico Poll

In an attempt to answer this question, we conducted two polls. These polls include thousands of Puerto Rican local residents who were asked to name their top five beaches.

From that list of the top five, as shown on the graph below, locals were asked to pick only one. The winner was La Chiva.

Why La Chiva Beach?

Previously known as Blue Beach, La Chiva has long held the title as one of the best beaches in Puerto Rico. It has been called a piece of paradise by locals and tourists. You can find it on Puerto Rico’s smaller island of Vieques. This area is home to some of the region’s best beaches.

the best beach in puerto rico

Facts about La Chiva

Here are a few known facts about La Chiva Beach:

  • It received it’s “Blue Beach” title when the US Navy was present in Puerto Rico.
  • The beach has two areas separated by large rocks.

If you are planning to spend the day at La Chiva, you’ll be lucky enough to find shade; no need to drag along an unwieldy beach umbrella. However, don’t count on finding sunscreen, snacks, books, sand pails and shovels. Come prepared with all your beach gear.

There are no retail sites anywhere on La Chiva Beach.

There are parking areas all along the beach. Aim for spots at beach entrances 10 through 17. If it is a windy day, a good rule of thumb is: the higher the parking site number, the calmer the water. Sites 10 through 12 give the best view of the water.

what is the best beach in puerto rico

The Beauty of La Chiva Beach

If you are an artist, you could make La Chiva Beach a study in blue. The west end of the beach has waters ranging from deep turquoise to navy blue along the horizon. At the east end, colors vary from sky blue to azure. Shades and hues change with the weather and the time of day. 

Aptly named “Blue Beach,” La Chiva has brilliant contrasting shades of blue unequaled by any other Puerto Rican beach. As a matter of fact, some tourists have called La Chiva one of the world’s best beaches!

most beautiful beaches in puerto rico

The Best Areas at La Chiva

The beach offers contrasts from west to east ends. It affords warm gentle waters in every season and a white-sand beach that is kept clean and natural.

This isn’t your typical touristy, crowded beach. 

If you crave solitude then the west end of La Chiva Beach is a great spot to think, read, meditate, and just enjoy the scenery. The snorkelers head to the east end lured by the crystal clear blue waters.

favorite beach in puerto rico

La Chiva is a snorkeler’s dream

Below the surface of its clear waters, avid snorkelers can explore an ocean environment rich in sea life and coral. You could spend entire days in the gentle waters investigating and studying this unique underwater world. If you are a novice or relatively new snorkeler, you might want to book a snorkeling class or take part in the many snorkeling groups available at La Chiva. 

An interesting sheltered snorkeling spots it the Cay at the east end of the beach. 

Activities at La Chiva

If you are not a snorkeler enthusiast, La Chiva provides excellent water for:

  • swimming
  • boating or fishing
  • scuba diving
  • hiking
  • kayaking

If you are not a water person, simply relax on La Chiva’s beautiful white sand beach, or take a walk. La Chiva’s white, pristine sands rank it among the top beaches in all of the Caribbean. 

Take a drive to the end of the road where you will see remarkable flora and fauna that cover Puerto Rico in lush green.

Waves are also small and gentle making it an ideal place for children to wade in the clear waters. 

Do you want to do some hiking? The Vieques National Wildlife Refuge has erected gazebos. These afford million-dollar views for walkers, photographers, and artists.

snorkeling in puerto rico

Scuba Diving at La Chiva

Near at hand for those who want to broaden your La Chiva Beach experience, you can book a scuba diving experience. Tours are available for both first-time and seasoned scuba divers. Instruction and certification are also available. Four-hour excursions are available from Ceiba. You can rent gear and wetsuits. 

See marine life including tropical fish, lobsters, stingrays, and sea turtles up close.

Classic Retro Billboards

Vintage Billboards

Advertising has evolved much over the ages. Before the advent of cheap, high-quality photo printing, painted illustrations were required to cover the large area of billboards. This meant that vintage billboards were works of art in and of themselves. Due to the limitations imposed by the use of illustrations, even the design of such ads was different.

We’ve compiled a list of some of the most effective, beautiful, and well-crafted vintage billboards to analyze and deconstruct.

Vintage Pepsi Billboard

Pepsi Vintage Billboard

For anyone who has seen the classic 1985 popcorn science fiction film, “Back to the Future”, this billboard might bring back a bit of nostalgia. There’s a scene in which the main character travels from an empty lot in 1955 to the same space in 1985, except the area is now occupied by a newly built suburban neighborhood. While this ad is clearly about Pepsi, it still manages to be highly representative of its era- a time when suburban development was on the rise as the American middle class prospered.

Perhaps the most interesting and striking aspect of this billboard is that it uses the scale in order to defy the expectations of the viewer and catch their attention.

Small objects such as the Pepsi bottle cap are drawn to dwarf traditionally larger objects such as the house being constructed. The technique is quite subtle, yet still manages to disarm and interest viewers.

Vintage Coca-Cola Billboard

Coca Cola Puerto Rico

Of course, if we are to look at old Pepsi ads, it is inevitable that vintage Coca-Cola ads be brought up as a contrasting point. The evolution of the marketing behind Coca-Cola is an always fascinating subject. Here is a rare snapshot of the brand’s humble beginnings. Simple, yet ever present, this ad was found in Puerto Rico and was among the first of the brand’s international marketing efforts.

Coca-Cola’s presence has been felt around the world for decades, this image highlights just how long Coca-Cola has been at the forefront of popular culture.

1920’s Spanish Tile Billboard

Vintage Spanish Tile Billboard

The ad pictured above is from a relatively recent photograph, meaning that this advertisement has remained intact for almost 100 years at this point, all thanks to the quality of craftsmanship and the materials used.

This billboard found in Sevilla, Spain dates back to the 1920s and is a beautiful and quite rare find. Comprised of painted tiles, it has more in common with traditional Spanish art than advertising materials. The amount of detail, care, and raw artistry that has gone into this piece come off as incredibly uncharacteristic with what audiences have come to expect out of ads. Thrilling and interesting they may be- modern ads are ultimately understood to be disposable and fleeting.

Motorcar Silhouettes Retro Billboard

Vintage Billboards

Flat design is highly distinguished by shape and color instead of perspective, lighting, and detail. These two elements are commonly found being manipulated in vintage ads. This ad is a prime example of how shape can be used and taken advantage of in an ad.

This ad for some motorcars is focusing specifically on the shapes of the front of each car, relying upon the highly distinctive and iconic silhouettes of the vehicles to add impact to the billboard’s message.

1967 Chevrolet Camaro Vintage Billboard

Camaro Vintage Billboard

This famous ad for the then brand-new Chevrolet Camaro is worth highlighting thanks to its striking use of bold colors.

As previously mentioned, color is the other side of the coin when it comes to flat design. While the last advertisement made great use of shapes and silhouettes, this Camaro ad chooses to shift the focus mainly to its usage of color, though the shape here is still very distinctive and clear.

The high contrast between the yellow, red, white, and black, makes it stand out and leaves an impression in the mind of the viewer. Such imagery has had a drastic impact on popular culture, inspiring visual effects in movies such as Quentin Tarantino’s “Kill Bill” and in video games such as “The House of the Dead”.

2.5D Oldsmobile Retro Billboard

Oldsmobile Vintage Billboard

In this example, the vintage billboard is comprised of multiple 2D elements layered in such a way to give the impression of depth, guiding the eye from the front left to the back right.

The beauty of billboards as an advertising medium comes from the fact that they exist within three dimensions. Many modern billboards take advantage of this by making use of models and other 3D constructs. As previously mentioned, however, many vintage billboards favored flat designs and thus approached the use of the Z-axis in a different way, utilizing a method

Interested in more creative outdoor media? Check out our article on funny signs and billboards.

Funny Advertising Fails

Funny Advertising Fails

Advertising is all about creating associations. People who see a clear message alongside your brand will connect the two in their mind even if they don’t consciously realize it. But this effect is a double-edged sword; if someone attaches their brand to a poorly made advertisement, it can really hurt their image. Of course, if an advertisement is so bad that it’s funny when people share it online. So these advertisements are either fails or successes depending on whether or not you believe that all publicity is good publicity.

Yahoo 404 Error?

For any website, serving a user up a 404 error is an embarrassment. For one of the world’s largest search engines, producing a 404 should probably never happen, so the unfortunate number placement in this baseball stadium next to the Yahoo banner makes for funny advertising fail. Location always matters!

Funny Advertising Fails

For any website, serving a user up a 404 error is an embarrassment. For one of the world’s largest search engines, producing a 404 should probably never happen, so the unfortunate number placement in this baseball stadium next to the Yahoo banner makes for funny advertising fail. Location always matters!

What Does That Say?

If you’re having trouble reading this on a screen that’s standing still imagine trying to read it while you drive past at more than sixty miles per hour. This sign seems like a real traffic hazard. Even if you can read it the slogan “see your teeth as we do” doesn’t feel worth the effort required.

Funny Advertising Fails

Hunters and Hygienists

So I’m confused, are they holding my dental hygienist hostage? Listen, it’s great if you have hobbies and sometimes you can even work your favorite pastime into your ad campaign. But your job and your hobby need to align in some way for it to work. All this sign makes me think of is my teeth mounted on the wall beside some antlers.

Hitchcock Dental Advertising Fail

Quality Control is Crucial

Even great designs can blow up in your face if the idea isn’t executed correctly. This ad must have looked great on the screen it was designed on but because the people putting the sign up didn’t put care into their work the whole impact was ruined. It just goes to show how important everyone, from the ad executive down to the person who actually has to physically put the ad up.

Coke Advertising Error

Diabetes, Straight Ahead

This sign placement is either incredibly unfortunate or ingenious. If the diabetes sign was there first, then McDonalds made a huge mistake. But if the McDonalds sign was the original sign then the people at the Ad Council found a great way to spread their message and make people question their unhealthy eating habits.

Diabetes Straight Ahead

Join the Fun!

Because of the way the picture was cropped we can’t tell what the full sign says. What we can say for sure is that this sign seems to be encouraging people to die, and that’s always going to be a bad advertising move.

Funny Advertising Error

Celebrating Remarkable Women

Mixing social issues and personal promotion always requires a tricky balancing act and the people behind this sign handled the challenge with the grace of a boozed-up bull in a china shop. Honoring women is a worthy goal, but when that’s your goal you probably don’t want to make it look like your company doesn’t have any female leadership.

Billboard Advertising Fails

Love Your Curves

On the topic of mixed messages, here we have another case of good intentions and poor execution. If you want to sell your product to women who identify as curvy, then you should probably hire some models who aren’t so skinny. This advertisement manages to feel pandering, tone deaf, and insulting all at once. In that way, it’s actually quite an accomplishment!

Love Your Curves Billboard Fail

This is Bland Flavor

Always triple check your font choice. Look at it yourself, show it to a friend, then show it to a stranger. If the designer behind this ad followed those steps, someone might have pointed out that the cursive I and S come together to look like a B, turning “island” into “bland.” It doesn’t help that the food in the picture ranges from black to brown to white. A little bit of garnish might wouldn’t have hurt.

Bland Flavor Advertising Fail

Technical Error

Just as technology has opened up new avenues for success, it has also created plenty of new chances for failure. In the old days, a billboard ad would never need to be rebooted. Then again, this might be a good advertisement if it was put up by one of Intel’s competitors as a way to paint their products as faulty.

Technical Error Billboard Advertising Fail

1-800-CALL

Last time I checked 1-800 numbers needs a few more numbers than this. What are the last three numbers? I know that CALL translates into 2255 but what three numbers do you get out of four generic looking lawyer types? Who thought this sign was complete? So many questions, so few answers.

Hilarious Billboard Fail

For more humorous advertisements check out our article on: Funny Signs and Billboards.

Facebook Billboard

How Does Facebook Spend its Advertising Budget? Billboards.

Have you ever seen a billboard ad for Facebook and stopped to wonder why one of the top online advertising powers in the world invests its marketing dollars into outdoor advertising?

Maybe not, but oh the irony. We personally think it’s pretty powerful that Facebook – an online marketing tool that stresses using its advertising tools to promote business  – spends it’s own marketing dollars on a traditional form of marketing in billboards. 

Facebook uses billboards for own ads

Live What You Love Campaign

One of the more noticeable Facebook billboard campaigns took place early last year across India. The campaign, entitled “Live What You Love” pushed groups, pages and events to Indian users in an effort to encourage them to join groups to find like-minded people.

The ads aired on prime time tv, and across prominent billboards in Mumbai, New Delhi, and several other cities.

Facebook Billboards

Spam Is Not Your Friends Campaign

Perhaps the better-known example of Facebook using TV, print ads and large billboards is the most recent campaign that began in March of last year around America. The sparse billboards and bus stop signs proclaimed “Spam is not your friends”, “false news is not your friends” and “clickbait is not your friends” along with a promise to change the way things appear in the newsfeed.

This campaign was in response to bombshell revelations about how Russian bots used Facebook to disseminate false information, spam, and clickbait to influence the 2016 presidential election.

Facebook then went on to launch a summer campaign in the European Union to advise users of their rights under the General Data Protection Regulation Act.

Why social media groups are buying billboards

Traditional Advertising is Still Key

Facebook’s efforts to reach its users not only on its own platform, but through traditional advertising methods like TV commercials, print ads and outdoor advertising on billboards, bus stops, subway signs and more underscore that the more things change, the more they stay the same.

In fact, outdoor advertising and billboards are the only advertising industry that is seeing more forecasted growth. In 2018, outdoor marketing was expected to grow 2% to account for an $8 billion market.

On the other hand, other traditional advertising saw a decline last year:

  • National TV Advertising: -1.5%
  • Local TV Advertising: -3.5%
  • Newspaper Advertising: -19%
  • Magazines -15%
  • Radio: -4%

The fact that outdoor advertising is the only section of the market seeing profitability amongst a mix of other traditional advertising methods shows us that outdoor media, billboards and signage are still one of the most effective ways to reach consumers when not on a digital platform.

Digital is the Difference

However, there is a marked difference between the success of traditional billboards and of digital billboards. Digital options are proven to be more cost-effective, and the bright, eye-catching effects that allow for multiple ads to appear on a single billboard makes the display more profitable for agencies and billboard owners.

Industries are taking notice of this, too.

Across a span of 10 years (2013 forecasted to 2023) spending on traditional billboards remains flat at $6 billion total. However, digital billboard advertising climbs year over year. From $646 million spend in 2013, the market is expected to hit $2 billion in 2023.

Facebook Billboard Use

Billboards of the Future

In the world of digital advertising and smartphones, some of the biggest streaming and service providers spend a huge amount of their marketing budget on strategic outdoor displays. In fact, even the iPhone has poured marketing funds and innovation into billboard strategy, with its iPhone X selfie campaign. Netflix also invests in billboards everywhere.

The Outdoor Advertising Association of America estimates that for every dollar spent on an outdoor advertising ad, it delivers $5.97 in return on investment. With new developments in location data and tracking, this is only forecasted to grow.

That’s because billboards are being fitted with tech and sensors to recognize when a person is nearby, or even analyze their smartphone data to specifically target passerby with curated content. Technology integration is revealing new advertising avenues every day, including computers analyzing data and statistics to decide when and where to place digital ads for the best impact.

In addition, new surfaces for advertising are being explored, including stationary car and taxi windows, as well as interactive and targeted directories, bus stop signs, retail windows and more. The outdoor advertising industry shows no signs of slowing, and the future of the digital billboard is bright!

Billboard Advertising Effectiveness

Why Billboard Marketing Works

With the emergence of social media advertising and other digital techniques, some may consider that outdoor advertising is past its hay-day. But that misconception is largely unfounded.

In fact, with the rise of the digital age, billboard marketing may even be more relevant and effective today.

With ever-developing effects, such as digital screens, 3-D figures or different structures, the concept of the billboard and why it works remains the same.  Companies should instead consider the billboard as a key method of advertising and a staple for across all industries.

Anyway you look at it, billboard advertising works, and its effectiveness has proven itself for decades. Here are some of the top reasons why billboards are an important marketing tool.

Advertising Effectiveness Billboards

The World is On the Move

Over time, countries all over the world have become more mobile. People spend less time at home. Whether enjoying a road trip or travel, commuting to work or simply seeking a new experience, the citizens of the globe are on the move.

All that time in cars ads up, and advertisements placed roadside where travelers and commuters can see them are sure to be noticed.

Drivers are a Captive Audience

Drivers eyes on the road, their eyes are also on the large, visually appealing billboards by the roadside.

It has always been true that drivers are a captive audience, and is becoming even more true with harsh legislation banning texting and driving and driving while distracted rolling out every year.

While drivers can turn down the radio or subscribe to a completely ad-free channel, they jeopardize their very safety by taking their eyes off the road. With little else to safely distract them, chances are they will spend a few moments peering at that billboard.

And, unlike other advertising mediums, outdoor ads cannot be turned off, hidden or thrown away.

Billboard Marketing Effectiveness

Billboards Inspire New Ideas

An effective billboard for a restaurant, attraction or even unique shop can generate instant sales for travelers who are looking to explore a new area.

With a growing culture of exploring off-the-beaten-path and seeking unique experiences, a well-placed billboard that provides directions to an unusual spot can generate instant sales.

This makes a billboard a surprisingly cost-effect method of advertising, as well. Although the original billboard itself can be pretty costly to design and erect, if placed effectively it will more than make back its’ cost in sales.

Advancements in billboard technology have also added a new dimension to billboard advertising effectiveness, with the ability to display multiple ads throughout the day.

Why Billboards are Effective | bMedia Group

Brand Repetition & Exposure

High brand awareness lies in repetition and exposure. While a tried-and-true marketing strategy, doing so is only expensive but also increasingly difficult to get noticed.

Billboard advertising is the only marketing media where the advertiser has full control of the ad space. The ad has constant exposure – no other media allows your message to be displayed 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It’s is a powerful marketing tool.

If what audiences see in your billboard makes them laugh, inspires them, reminds them of a positive memory or any other avenue of emotional connection…you’ve probably secured a loyal customer.

Let’s face it, today’s consumers are constantly barraged with advertisements in print, online, over the radio, commercials on television and even on social media.

With a constant stream of sellers courting each consumer, a very particular method of selection based on emotional connection has emerged. Think about it: if an advertisement can charm you or make you laugh in the few seconds it takes to view it, don’t you think more positively about that company?

The same concept applies to billboards, and works here better than many other advertising avenues. You have a captive audience guaranteed to glance over your billboard for at least a few seconds.

Photo of effective billboard | Why billboards work

Impact & Creativity

Billboard marketing is big, bold, colorful and creative.

With all the technological advancements and swirls of advertisers globally, companies are encouraged to top one another in creativity and thinking outside the box. Consumers have come to expect this and celebrate it.

For example, Chick-Fil-A is just another fast-food sandwich stop, isn’t it? Wrong.

Chick-Fil-A is a globally recognized brand for a myriad of reasons, including their top-notch customer service, good works and their famous billboards.

The second you glimpse a familiar black and white billboard in the distance with hand-painted splashes of red, you know what you’re looking at. That’s even before you see the 3D cows posed in a variety of amusing positions, or the humble red Chick-Fil-A logo. The cows “vandalizing” the billboard have become an expected and creative part of their advertising strategy, and to look at their earnings, we think its’ working.

So if you are looking to stand out from the crowd, reach people faster and more effectively, consider billboard marketing in your arsenal.

Contact bMedia to learn more.

Evolution of Outdoor Advertising Industry

Evolution of Outdoor Advertising

Outdoor advertising isn’t a new marketing method. In fact, it’s been around since ancient times. The earliest outdoor advertising methods were chiseled on monuments in ancient cultures- including in Ancient Egypt! Hieroglyphics have been found describing laws of the country. Travelers were meant to stop and learn the rules of the civilization before entering. In this way, it can be described as an early form of outdoor advertising.

However, actual billboards as we know them didn’t evolve for many more centuries. Let’s take a look at a brief history of the evolution of outdoor advertising and where the industry is headed today.

Outdoor Ads Evolution

Early Forms of Advertising

Many people have heard of the famous Gutenberg press. Johannes Gutenberg invented the movable type printing in 1450. He was most likely influenced by primitive examples from China, Japan, and Korea. These traveled by traders along the Silk Road to Europe cultures. His inspired invention, the Gutenberg Press, rang in modern forms of advertising as we recognize them today!

In particular, handbills became very popular. Handbills, which were exactly what they sound like, were leaflets with advertising information handed out. They can be likened to early versions of newsletters!

In 1796, the first major form of outdoor advertising emerged- the illustrated poster. Using lithography, companies could create large numbers of posters for advertisement to be hung in storefronts, store windows, and even street corners.

Primitive Billboards

Primitive versions of billboards have been in use for centuries. The most common example would be posted by trails to notify travelers of an inn ahead. Travelers on foot, horseback or being pulled in a carriage would learn how far the inn was ahead, as well as what they had to offer in the way of amenities.

Posted signs along the roadside served the purpose to aid travelers to find food and shelter rather than advertising many types of goods that are found today. Widespread advertising using billboards didn’t become popular until the invention of the car.

Evolution of Outdoor Advertising

Automobiles & Outdoor Advertising

As automobiles were created and boomed, pioneering marketers realized that there was a prime opportunity to use long stretches of road to advertise products. After all, automobiles encouraged travel and mobility. This, in turn, created a need to inform travelers of what they could expect from landmarks, attractions, and hospitality on the road ahead.

Advertisements lauding local sights, national parks, and curiosities sprang up just before towns in an attempt to encourage travelers to stop and spend their money in town. Restaurants and hotels quickly followed suit, creating a real demand for enticing designs that drew travelers into a town.

Bigger Becomes Better

Billboards and outdoor advertisements had to grow larger and larger over the years for an interesting reason. As motor vehicles evolved and gained speed, advertisers needed to make their billboards bigger in order to be seen from further away! If advertisers didn’t make their billboards big enough, the motorist would zoom past their sign without being able to read it!

However, bigger didn’t mean better to everyone – in particular, the United States Government. In the 1960’s, President Lyndon B. Johnson introduced the Highway Beautification Act, which prevented billboards from overtaking America’s roadways. This legislation was passed in an effort to check outdoor advertising companies from blocking America’s scenic landscape with various advertising.

Digital Technology Changes the Game

Prior to digital technology, meticulously handpainted billboards were the norm. However, beginning in the 1990s, computer-painted and printed materials became standard. More recently in the first decade of the 2000s, LED lighted and completely digital billboards have become popular. Technology has allowed smart sensor billboards or even billboards that scroll through several images in a minute.

Outdoor Media Evolution

As the industry continues to evolve, more unique effects can be expected in outdoor advertising. 3D elements and visually engaging details have emerged. For example, the famous cows on the Chik-Fil-A signs that “graffiti” billboards to plead consumers to “eat more chikin.” The sides of buildings and skyscrapers are cleverly used for enormous posters and advertisements (such as the now iconic Times Square!) Full vehicle wraps have placed outdoor advertising on the sides of buses, cars, and even planes. 

Smart sensor technologies and facial recognition technologies have created bus stop advertisements that interact with viewers. From games to targeted advertisements with videos and audio, outdoor advertisements have evolved to capture consumer attention in a multitude of different types of digital billboards.

How Outdoor Advertising Has Evolved

Outdoor Advertisement is Still Evolving

It seems that every day, new innovations and methods for advertising outdoors occur. Driven on by market competition, development of new capabilities and polishing of existing processes makes the sky the limit with outdoor advertising.

Rum Ads

Vintage Rum Ads from Puerto Rico

Puerto Rico is well known for being one of the finest producing islands of rum in the world. Combine that with that fact that alcohol advertising, in general, has always been a very competitive and creative space and you’ve got a very interesting space for advertising. Over the years there have been a large number of rum companies who have tried to make an impact on the industry.

As advertising has switched to a digital medium we often miss the simpler times of advertising where had drawn art and creativity were crucial.  We’ve put together some of our favorite rum ads from a variety of different companies, some that still exist today and some that didn’t make the cut. Regardless of how they faired in business, they did a great job at making some very cool retro rum ads.

Learn more about why billboards are so effective

Ron Rico

  • Started: 1935
  • City: Arecibo
  • Status: Active

Vintage RonRico Ads

Ron Merito

  • Started: 1946
  • City: Arecibo
  • Status: No Longer in Production

Vintage Rum Ads Merito

Riondo Rum

  • Started: 1941
  • City: N/A
  • Status: No Longer in Production

Vintage Riondo Rum Ads

Don Q Rum

  • Started: 1865
  • City: Ponce
  • Status: Active

Don Q Vintage Rum Ads

 Extra: Christopher Columbus Rum (From Dominican Republic)

  • Started: 1930
  • City: Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic
  • Company: Barceló
  • Status: Active

Christopher Columbus Vintage Rum Ads

Whether we like it or not, advertising has changed significantly since the rise of computers and the Internet. Decades ago, it was a far simpler time for companies looking to try and get their message across. Radio, outdoor media, newspapers, magazines, and eventually TV advertisements were the preferred options where businesses would spend their advertising dollars. From social media to Google Adwords the online world’s impact on the industry have changed the game forever. As consumers are inundated with ads nearly every minute of the day, it often becomes a game of quantity versus quality in advertisements. While this is a reality that we just have to accept. We hope these rum ads took you back to the good old days of advertising for a little while.