How to create the ultimate outdoor billboard to attract customers

We live in an era in which startups are a dime-a-dozen, digital content is king and everybody is an expert on how to run a business – but nobody knows how to leverage existing media to attract customers for said business. Outdoor advertisements allow you to reach a wide demographic. This is really helpful if you don’t know who it is that you want to sell to. However, in order to reach the right target audience through your billboard message, you will need to create an outstanding billboard campaign if you want to capture the market. Before we get into specific strategies for creating stellar billboards and attracting customers, let’s talk briefly but what exactly it is that billboards are supposed to do.

What is a billboard?

In very basic laymen terms, a billboard is a giant rectangular ‘canvas” on a really wide steel frame that talks about a company and advertises their services and products These billboards work traditionally placed along the interstate, and other strategic areas. Billboards now a days are much more than that. They do not have to be alongside the road. They do not even have to be built up high. Billboards are now everything from six-foot tall 3D cups laying on its side with what looks like coffee coming out, clean air bus shelters with a message and human “screens carrying digital displays.Outdoor advertising has some a long, long way.

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A billboard is nothing more than a communication medium that tries to get a point across. People in marketing do their best to get this point across as clearly and attractively as possible.

Creating billboards to attract customers

It can be confusing to figure out what rules to play by when creating an outdoor advertising campaign. Incorrectly displaying billboard designs can cause problems for the business and lead to negative branding. Below are a few rules to keep in mind when creating outdoor billboards – in no particular order.

Be funny but not offensive

We have all come across billboards that are absolutely hilarious. Other billboards not so much. Sometimes when an advertiser tries to be funny and they miss the mark, results can be catastrophic!  A popular billboard ( by a well-known company that we will not name) recently displayed a funny advertisement, but because of the nature of the advertisement, some people also thought the ads were incredibly offensive. It seemed as if the company was condoning violence against women. In all honesty, they weren’t condoning any sort of violence. The truth: it was the opposite. So, no matter how funny something is, or how innocuous it may seem, it is important to remember that someone might still get offended.

Keep your message clear and uncluttered

You can use your billboard to draw attention to your website where you can do much of your advertising. When you have a billboard, you will need to ensure that it is not cluttered or confusing. Having a tough to understand or ugly billboard can actually turn a potential customer off. You want to get your message out there and make it memorable, not like an amateur has created the advertising campaign.

Pay attention to location

Going along with the previous point, having a cluttered billboard can put a damper on your marketing campaign. Since billboards are primarily meant for people in moving vehicles, it is important to give only as much information as is absolutely necessary.

More is better

Have plenty of billboards in an area in order to increase the chance of people remembering you. Some advertisers even have multiple billboards down the road to continue their advertisement.

Make it memorable

What is the point if you have a billboard if no one can remember it? You want to leave an imprint in the minds of your customers.  Don’t be  bland or safe   -be bold and take calculated creative risks because that’s The only way to print yourself in your audience’s psyche. Do not use a billboard that is blocking natural sites. Also, you need to consider the local impact. Do not block tourist locations or local favorites – you .

Audiences can be fickle – stay current.

Just because people liked your billboard at one time, it does not mean that they will continue to like it in the same way, shape or form you used before. Make sure that that your advertising campaign matches current market trends.

Stay positive. Stay Classy.

Just because others are attacking competitors in their advertising, does not mean that you should do it also. People may believe a negative advertising statement, but more and more research shows that people are getting tired of the negativity.  Search disparaging messages reflect workers on your brand than the brand you are actually talking about

Remember the matching principle

Your advertising should match the area that you are in. Certain items should not be advertised in certain areas. For example, it would be really inappropriate and distasteful move if you advertised adult products at a suburban neighborhood school crossing! Match your brand content to the neighborhood, demographics and outlook of the people in the vicinity of the advertisement

Embrace tech

There have been many advances in outdoor advertising technology. Before the images were static. Then there were the billboards that showed different images depending on your position. Now there are full video billboards. Find the tech you like, and make sure it is within your budget.

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Stay authentic to your own original voice

Bigger is not always better.

There is a tendency among newbies when creating brand strategy to craft loud and self-serving messaging. Subconsciously people might think that oversized logos and aggressive selling are pretentious. Use the remaining area to add value and share information instead of slapping on a huge logo onto your billboard. Do not give out too much information though. Always leave your audience wanting more.

Now that you know all the ins and outs of creating fantastic outdoor advertising, you can put this knowledge to good use by booking your advertisement space while sitting in the comfort of your home. For hassle-free media bookings, go to the Gainbuzz homepage!


  • ShwetaP

    Basically, anything can be advertised outdoors – what matters is the location of the advertisement. I like the example about putting up appropriate advertisement in the right neighborhood. Along similar lines, you would not want to advertise alcohol on billboards in an Amish community, but you could advertise a feed store! The old saying “location, location, location” is very important here. Yes, anything can be advertised, but you would not advertise everything everywhere.

    • DawsonSteven

      Wait, so what you are trying to say is don’t be too funny for your own good! Unless it can go viral, then always do it. Just kidding! You should definitely be careful with humor in high-traffic area billboards: today’s millennials can be easily offended and very vocal about their dislikes on social media!