effective brand building through billboard advertising

Billboards are big, bold, and visible, making them the ideal canvas for effective brand building. If you are a new or up-and-coming business, or you are in the process of relaunching your brand/products/services, we recommend visiting our post Building Visibility With a Visual Marketing Strategy to learn more about the why and how of visuals. 

Don’t Underestimate the Power of Billboard advertising On Millennials 

Feel like billboard advertising is outdated? Think again.  

Millennials are considered the most influential audience for marketers due to their large numbers. This hip and tech-savvy crowd surprised us all when Nielsen Media Research revealed findings that 56% of millennials reported they trust out-of-home, traditional marketing strategies more than digital versions. Not only that, 63% of the millennial market intentionally disregard or block targeted digital advertisements to reduce spam or filler content that’s unrelated to the pages they want to read.  

That information is inspiring for business owners ready to use traditional get their brand front and center in front of their target market’s eyes. 

Effective brand building through billboard advertising gives you the chance to not only grow brand recognition, but it also means getting your brand out there to prospective targets who live outside of your typical geomarketing realm. 

Use Billboards to Grow Your Brand With These 7 Tips 

The following tips are designed to teach business owners and marketing teams how to use billboards – and optimize their use – so your brand gets the right message to the right people.

Understand how large format printing may alter your approach

Size matters in advertising. That is why smaller format printing doesn’t always translate into large format presentations. For this reason, it’s important to understand how the size of your final product is important when it comes to large format print projects. 

If you are new to larger format print projects, choose your printer wisely. You need a design and print team with a successful track record designing and producing billboard-worthy signage. Visit our post What to Consider When Choosing a Large Format Printer and review it before searching for your billboard printing company.

Be prepared to track analytics

Meta analytics is key for marketing teams as they learn what is most effective in capturing quality leads and translating those to official sales. Since billboard “views” cannot be tracked in a digital capacity – in the same way website visits, click-thrus, or shares can – you will need to get serious about tracking analytics in a manual way – aka, direct asks about how your customers found you. 

Once the billboards are up, make sure you add “billboards” to any of the surveys or questionnaires you use to track how prospects and customers found out about you. Using billboard-specific URLs or social media campaigns, similar to the ones you create for eNewsletter sales and other offers, is another smart way to track site visits, leads, and sales that funneled through your billboard campaign.

Choose locations wisely

While billboards along major freeways and roads reach high numbers of people, strategic selection of billboard locations may yield greater payoffs.  

Considerations for optimal billboard locations include: 

  • Readable height and angle for passing motorists (typically 5- to 10-feet off the ground) 
  • A location with a high traffic count 
  • Attention to residential vs. commercial areas with respect to your target audience 
  • Proximity to your business location(s) if brick-and-mortar visits are your goal 
  • Does the road experience heavy traffic during rush hours (more time for motorists to see, read, and learn…)? 

Considering popular routes or geographical areas used by your ideal target demographics is another smart move. For example, if your target audience members are younger, consider billboards closer to streets that feed into high schools or universities. Do you aim to hit the active, outdoor population? Consider billboards located on major streets adjacent to REIs or Dick’s Sporting Goods stores or on roads leading to popular campgrounds and outdoor areas, etc. etc.  

Again, your large format printing company may have excellent suggestions about what has worked and ideal locations for their previous and current customers.

Balance your budget by billboard size and desired impressions

It makes sense that the larger the billboard, the greater the design and space rental costs. Thus, business owners are wise to balance their available budget with the size of a billboard and the potential views or impressions it will make. 

According to statistical research on billboard size and views/impressions, bluelinemedia.com provides the following information: 

Billboard Size Views per day 

11’ x 5’ (8-sheet, or junior/small billboard size)8,000 to 12,000 

22’ 8” x 10’ 5” (30 sheet or medium billboard)10,000 to 20,000 

48’ x 14’ (Bulletin or large billboard) 20,000 to 50,000 

48’ x 14’ (Lage digital billboard) 35,000 to 65,000 

Unsure whether the budget is worth it? Read, Why You Should Advertise with Print Billboards for inspiring facts and figures. 

Billboard vs wall mural

Have you considered the idea of a wall mural? Equally large and even larger than the biggest billboard options are wall murals. In some cases, they may be more expensive. In others, you may be surprised when the right building owner (blighted buildings along major freeways and highways), an aspiring artist or group of artists, and your brand come together. 

Our home cities of Oakland and San Francisco are known for their stunning wall murals. A bit of creativity can put your brand, its products, and services, front and center while also improving a building’s appeal and promoting local artists. Mural-esque prints are also available, similar to vehicle wrapping, and can be applied to a building for a more permanent and less expensive alternative.

Make it quickly legible and engaging

Unless you’ve specifically chosen a billboard’s location to fit the “rush hour traffic” criteria, billboards must be instantly legible and memorable. Nobody is going to stop their car to write down your inspiring paragraph or contact info. The information must be almost instantly absorbed via short, concise, easy-to-read verbiage and images that tell the bulk of the story. If your billboard is not readable in two- to five-seconds, reconsider its design.

Prepare for the long-haul with your billboard advertising

Be prepared to keep those billboards up for a long period of time, and across multiple brand campaigns. The longer the billboards are up, the more they build effective brand recognition. Over extended periods of time, they also build brand trust and loyalty. If you come up with thematic and complimentary campaigns, or campaigns that continue to build on a connected theme, audiences will find them even more engaging. 

Audience engagement is a sign your billboard campaigns are working and serving as an effective brand-building tool.

SpeedPro East Bay has worked with business owners and influencers throughout the Bay Area to create billboard designs that achieve strategic results. Contact our design and print team to begin designing and implementing your upcoming billboard designs.