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The Eleven Point Guide to Creating Eye-Catching Billboards —75Media

The best place for ‘brands’ is OOH

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Message for Lindmark Ink

OOH continues to make its mark as industry growth outshines other sectors|
– 75Media creates a guide on how to capitalize on the industry’s success and create an impactful out-of-home campaign

Growth of the out-of-home (OOH) industry shows no sign of slowing down, according to recently released industry figures. Q1 revenues from 2023 show a 5.1% rise compared to the same period in 2022. The industry, in the last quarter alone, was worth £251m – proof that brands are continuing to see the value of outdoors1.

This is against a backdrop of other traditional forms of advertising – such as national and regional print, direct marketing and radio – all predicted to shrink this year, according to the Advertising Association/WARC2. The organizations have forecast a 4.9% increase in OOH spend in 2023 versus total advertising spend growth of just 0.5%.

Whilst the share of market for digital outdoor advertising stayed stable at around 61%, revenue from that sector grew 6.8%. Classic billboards have also grown 2.5% year on year1.

Paul Inman, managing director at outdoor advertising operator 75Media, said: “Things understandably dipped during the pandemic, so it’s fantastic to see the out-of-home industry soaring again. OOH globally is forecasted to grow 12.7% this year3, and the UK will be one of the top 10 areas of growth, without a doubt. The beauty of out-of-home is that it’s very scalable – so it’s as suitable for global brands as it for small local businesses.

“It’s such a flexible medium too, it’s something you can get really creative with and which can have a huge impact. People still talk about billboards – which isn’t something you really get with many other forms of advertising. Plus, they strike the ideal balance between being relatively unintrusive and successfully targeting potential customers at a time when they’re most likely to engage with brands.”

billboard of train

To help organizations of all shapes and sizes capitalize on the opportunity provided by OOH, the team at 75Media has created a Guide to creating eye-catching billboards, with advice for those looking to ensure their advertising spend makes a splash. Some of the tips include:

  • Choose your canvas – do you want eye-catching large format billboards, typically used at busy roadsides and motorway junctions? Or perhaps you’re targeting consumers using public transport and you’d be better focusing on smaller sites near transport hubs? Your audience, your budget and your objectives should drive the decision.
  • Timing is everything – is this something you want to target to a specific time of year/date? Do you want everyone to see you on repeat for a period of time – or would you rather people only saw you at certain times of the day, or days of the week? In which case digital OOH advertising might work well.
  • Have a clear message – be clear from the outset about how you want this billboard to engage with your audience – what is the purpose? Keep it simple. Creative doesn’t have to mean complex.
  • Consider an integrated campaign – a one-off billboard can be brilliant, but an integrated campaign, across all your marketing, will amplify your message far and wide.
  • Imagery and wording are equally important – when people read information, research shows they’re likely to remember just 10% three days later. People retain up to 65% of the same information when it’s paired with a relevant image.
  • Have a strong call-to-action – there are proven links between billboard ads and smartphones, with customers who see an OOH ad 17% more likely to engage with a brand through their mobile device. Are you asking people to visit a website? Check you out on social media? Or head to your nearest retail outlet?
  • Color me beautiful – utilize colors that can reflect your brand’s visual identity, but focus on one or two bold shades. Try to create a contrast between the colors that you deploy and your backdrop too, making your ad easy to process at-a-glance. Avoid white backgrounds where possible.
  • Typical typography – written content must be easy to read both up-close and at a distance. A font should be a minimum of 18 inches in height on large format 48 and 96-sheet billboards. Use fonts that are clean and crisp and avoid using all caps as this can make it harder to read.
  • The rule of three – people are typically more visually engaged when they see a group of three items. That could translate to three core visual elements in your creative; namely a single image or high quality photograph, a headline and a reference to your brand’s logo.
  • Short and sweet – a headline should be no more than six or seven words in length. In fact, keeping the messaging to fewer than 250 characters can actively boost engagement by up to 60% according to some studies.
  • Keep people on their toes – if this is going to be a prolonged campaign keep the branding instantly recognizable but tweak the visuals and headline content so it doesn’t become background ‘noise’ that people no longer notice.

1 https://www.outsmart.org.uk/resources/uk-out-home-revenue

2 https://www.creativebrief.com/bite/industry-sees-slow-and-steady-post-covid-recovery

3 https://www.groupm.com/mid-year-advertising-forecast-2023/

About 75Media
75Media is an outdoor advertising operator with a growing network of classic, D48 and large format billboards in towns and cities across the UK. As well as working with some of the country’s biggest brands and agencies, 75Media is also committed to giving businesses of all sizes a voice through affordable billboard advertising. 2023 marked the launch of our rapid UK-wide growth strategy which saw our roadside billboard portfolio expand into iconic urban locations such as London, Manchester, Liverpool, Birmingham and Leeds. This spring, we also announced our move into Scotland with the acquisition of 122 new billboard sites, including Scotland’s largest roadside advertising structure, the M8 Tower in Glasgow. Since 2021, we have worked in partnership with the Yorkshire Dales Millennium Trust (YDMT), helping the charity deliver a variety of projects aimed at supporting the people, landscape and wildlife of the Yorkshire Dales.

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