Media Buying and Inbound Marketing Blog

Should Outdoor Advertising Be Part of Your Media Mix?

By Jane Peters on January 25, 2012 |


                                 outdoor advertising terms

Outdoor advertising has come a long way in the past few years. Billboards used to be primarily on freeways, but the industry has expanded. 

Billboards once shunned as environmentally unfriendly, some communities have strict ordinances governing the placement of billboards. Many cities such as Columbus, OH put a moratorium on the building of outdoor signs and in Vermont, they’re prohibited.

Often scoring as one of the least memorable forms of advertising, outdoor was often over looked in the media mix.  There have been a lot of changes in the outdoor industry in recent years that make outdoor advertising worth a second look. 

Billboards are most effective when located close to the business advertised. Because of their high cost, they're usually used to reach a very large audience, as in political campaigns. They're likely to be too expensive for most small firms.

Outdoor Advertising is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, and 365 days a year and generates repeated exposure to your potential customers.

Outdoor Advertising captures your consumers on their way to buy.

Outdoor Advertising is perfect for reaching mass audiences and is also great for targeting specific demographic neighborhoods.

New digital billboards allow for more creative expression and allow you to change your billboard message as often as you would like.  State lottery billboards are often changed to show how large the pot is.

New technology allows some billboards to make sounds.

You may want to consider adding billboards to your marketing mix if you:

  1.  Want to keep your brand name out there such as a bank or credit card company.

  2.  Want to entice people to do something such as come to your restaurant such as fast food chains like McDonalds

  3.   Want to advertise radio stations.   After all, more listening occurs in cars than anywhere else.

  4.   Want to target a particular neighborhood or multi-cultural groups.

  5.   You are running a political campagin.

When planning your outdoor media strategy there are a few things to remember. Placement of billboards is critical.  You want to buy boards with high traffic counts. Some locations will be highly sought after and “locked up” so beware that you don’t end up with your ads on billboards that few people will see.

Billboards are expensive to produce and the ad space is not cheap.  Be sure you have enough money in your budget to buy enough boards to impact your target audience.

You can only convey a very concise message.  Boards with too much information are not effective. Be sure your creative is simple, easy to read and memorable.

If you would like to know more about outdoor advertising, download our FREE glossary of Outdoor terms.

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