As other forms of outdoor advertising continue to face fierce competition from internet and social media advertising, creative billboards are still as effective as they were 100 years ago. However, marketers still need to get past numerous challenges to get their message across through advertising billboards.
The quality of graphics or durability of the fabric is not much of a problem anymore. Today, marketers have to cut through the noise with eye-catching designs and generally intriguing advertisements. Here are the requirements for creating an effective advertising billboard.
- A Memorable Story
Your billboard design should have an inspiring theme to draw in viewers, direct them to the message, and make it memorable. Humans are more inclined to remember stories than facts. Start by identifying the message that you want people to relate your billboard with.
It could be to raise awareness of your glamorous brand so they are more likely to notice it in stores; or to direct them to a fast food joint on the next exit so they have the energy to keep going; or perhaps to your business website that solves a major problem. The key is to take the main message and give it meaning: evoke an emotion, fulfil a need, or solve a problem.
- Exceptionally Arresting Design
The ability to capture the attention of consumers moving at over 50 mph is achieved with multiple billboard design elements working in cohesion. Once you have your story, the next step is to tell the story through graphics and text.
Find a large, loud or dynamic image that not only communicates the message, but also leaves an impact in less than 5 seconds. Brainstorm a few ideas and choose those images that get your team to smile or smirk in an instant. Use bright, contrasting colours to create bigger impact and boost your message’s retention.
- Easily Scanned
Keep in mind that viewers will see your billboard while on the move, and from a distance. They should be able to pick up most of the content from a quick glance. This translates to a maximum of seven words printed in a large and clear font. Ideally, the words should be playful to make an impact. A message that creates a chuckle is more likely to stick than one that doesn’t evoke any emotion. Besides the typography, you need to take proper design and layout into account, and use white (blank) spaces to improve legibility and to facilitate eye flow from graphics to text.
Final Tip: Keep it Simple and Safe
Advertising billboards are largely visual elements. They are also a secondary advertising medium intended to support campaigns and create brand recognition. So, avoid a cluttered design filled with phone numbers, store locations, or web addresses. Instead, choose a main call-to-action and use the graphics and text to support it. For more engagement with your audience, direct them to your print or online marketing campaigns.