10 Steps to Create Effective Billboard Ads

How to Create Effective Billboard Ads?

Audiences are not that responsive towards the Billboard as they used to about 20-30 years back. Though it is still considered as one of the effective outdoor advertising space the audiences are so much engrossed in their smart devices like tablet, smartphones and handheld computers, it has become more difficult than ever to turn their heads towards your billboard ads.

Well, that does not lead to its ending. We know that we have very few of them in our mind but it can still be created in a way that can be effective enough to draw the customers’ attention.

As outdoor advertising still dominate the majority of our advertising world and digital marketing is slowly yet steadily penetrating into the market share, it is high time to learn how to make your billboard advertisement count.

Are you to make an impact with your billboard? Here are the 10 most effective strategies to become successful with your Billboard advertisement.

1) Six Words or Less is Ideal

As we look at billboards while on the move, we barely have time to understand them.  Six seconds have been lauded as the industry average for reading an advertisement. So your message should be covered within six words. You can extend a few words depending on their length and comfort of reading, less is more here according to the rule of thumb. Concision is difficult and headlines with small paragraphs have less readability. So if you have a complicated brand, product or service, you should design and create your ad in a unique way.

2) Get noticed, but avoid Distraction

Billboards are there to grab the attention of drivers, bikers, cyclists or pedestrians. This causes an unusual dilemma for the advertiser; you want to get noticed, but you don’t want to be responsible for major, or even minor, accidents. Much news covered in a way where drivers are distracted while reading billboards. So billboards should not be distractive.

3) This is not an advertisement to receive a direct response

There are truly some terrifying billboards displaying phone numbers and website addresses. 99.9% of the people will neither read the billboard nor will call or visit the website. It is a secondary advertising medium, which means that it’s perfect for brand-building and promoting a campaign, but it just cannot do the heavy lifting. If you want more frequent engagement with your target audience, use print advertising, television, radio, flyers, websites and direct mail. A quick message is a better medium than Billboards.

4) Be Smart, But Not Too Clever

A boring billboard will be ignored. An interesting billboard will leave a long-lasting impression and will grab the attention of the audience. As a rule, billboard should not confuse the audience and make them wonder what is going on. Complex visual metaphors are no good here. They say advertising should be easy to solve so that audience can figure it out.

Be smart, have fun, but don’t make people puzzled that even Einstein will have trouble with solving. It’s not a medium to showcase your cleverness rather a medium of marketing your business through advertising.

5) The More Billboards, the Better

A billboard is not only cheap but it’s effective too. Billboards are definitely a mass market medium, but they need back up. So you need more than one and grab as much attention as you can. Every billboard gets a rating which is called Gross Ratings Points (GRP). This usually based on traffic, visibility, location, size and so on. This rating gives you a visual score between 1 and 100. 50 means 50% of the population in that area would see one of your boards.

{If you have only one billboard around your city, the chances for your impression are obviously lesser than if you have four or five. If you want a 100 score, that’s not going to be cheap. You can expect to pay tens of thousands of bucks for a 50 showing for only one month.

6) Don’t Say It, Show It

Billboard ideas must be very creative. The standard of the billboard is flat, but it doesn’t have to be the average. You opt for a 3D billboard for being more creative. Billboards must be eye-catching and memorable so that it will create opportunity. The advantage to this is that it can create additional press, without crashing into your budget.

A 3D billboard is more expensive than the regular ones but this will give almost 10x PR impression.

7) Avoid Repetition of Any Kind

You have some special space to work on. It requires a lot of bucks to set up a billboard, and stick to this plan, utilize every inch of this space intelligently. Suppose you are portraying a headline that describes your visual, you are misusing the words. If your understanding is weak or doesn’t match to the product, you are failing in proper utilization of your opportunity. You will hear many great copywriters and art directors saying, concision is the last word.

8) Keep It Simple, Stupid

A billboard is a quick read. Most billboards are seen during driving, and the message should be covered in a way so that it can be captured within a few seconds. Experimenting with complex ideas may confuse viewers.  The Billboards should be powerful like an easy punch.

9) Be Wary of Logo Size

One of the most repetitive pieces of customer feedback ever noticed in advertising is “make the logo bigger. “It will be easy to understand. They are paying a lot on branding their products to bring more and more customer to their shop. However, they have to maintain a balancing act. Neither it should be too big to understand nor should it be too small which keeps puzzled. Saying that sometimes not showing logo can be very effective.

10) Do The “Arm’s Length” Test

In this way, you have followed the majority of the rules above. You’ve designed yourself one awesome billboard. It’s perfect, it’s succinct, it has differentiating colors, it’s fascinating, and it will work. In any case, will it be seen? Will it be perused, and understood? Here’s a brisk test to guarantee you are not squandering everybody’s time and money.

Take a print out of your billboard similar to a business card. Then, hold it out at a careful distance. Now, are you seeing everything you were on your computer screen 27” screen? If not, you need to work more on it.

We hope that with reading the above 10 pointers on creative and effective billboard ad making you are ready to jump into action. Did you find our blog post helpful? Drop us a line in the comments section below. For a more in-depth read on topics related to outdoor advertising and branding follow our IMS blog.