Outdoor LED signage is a popular form of advertising which allows brands to meet people while they are in the real world, and encourages them to take action. In 2020, outdoor advertising saw a drop in numbers because of the pandemic, most people spend unusually high amounts of time at home. But in 2021, the figures recovered swiftly and by the third quarter of 2021, the revenue from outdoor advertising in America increased by 38% as compared to the spending in 2020.
While it can be seen that outdoor digital signage will continue to grow, let us discuss some strategic and creative ways that brands can attract their audiences and engage with them effectively.
1. Think beyond just the billboard
Business owners and advertisers often think that digital billboards are the most effective type of outdoor advertising, but they are just one format of advertising. The possibilities are endless, so while electronic billboards are indeed effective, think beyond and consider making use of other outdoor advertising to drive brand awareness and encourage attractive calls-to-action, while also getting consumers to stop by your website, download your app, and stop by your retail store. Try lesser-known options such as skywriting and drones. Also, during events, you could deploy mobile LED signs on vehicles that cruise through the streets. Floating billboards and leveraging blimps are other outdoor advertising options that can be considered.
2. Consider touchpoints
You cannot be satisfied by utilizing just one medium of outdoor advertising while there are several forms that allow brands to target markets and connect with their consumers. By establishing multiple touchpoints, your audience will remember your brand and increase the likelihood of taking some action. Frequency and diversity are what consumers believe as key to creating an impact.
Let us take a scenario here for ease of explanation. Imagine you are looking to advertise an event such as a conference or trade show. Begin your advertising strategy by hiring space on electronic signage at the airport – which is where your audience journey will begin. Then incorporate signage in taxis, transit areas and mobile digital billboards to connect with attendees that are within the geographical vicinity. You could then rent out space on indoor LED signs at restaurants, retail stores and other tourist attractions to engage visitors and draw them to your event. Mixing ad formats is a great way to stay within budget while also connecting with audiences at various touchpoints in their journey.
3. Design and strategy should be parallel
Artwork is not the beginning of the ‘design’ process; instead, it starts with strategy. Firstly, ask yourself the question: does the design align with your goal? Next, determine whether or not the design makes sense in the context within which it is placed? For maximum efficiency, outdoor LED signs need to focus on a specific goal or immediate action. So, although you have plenty of space on that initial blank canvas that you are working on, the endless creative opportunities will be of no use if the direction is not clear. If for example your ultimate purpose is for consumers to download an app, make sure a prominent call-to-action is displayed.
When deciding the content for your digital signage display, think about how you want to inform your media regarding your message. For example, a QR code might be appropriate for a transit station but won’t work on a billboard placed on a busy highway. Outdoor advertising can fit into its environment without any problems but you have to be creative to make your advertisement an effective one. As always, keep your ads simple and easy to read, and choose eye-catching colors with high contrast. Also, always consider your ultimate goal, and the relevance of the advertisement to your audience.
4. Calls to action and QR codes
If your outdoor LED sign is truly creative and engaging, audiences will be tempted to act. Therefore, it is very important to incorporate clear calls to action on highway and roadside billboards, and other formats of outdoor advertising. Be sure to include your website URL or come up with strong, memorable URLs for landing pages specific to your campaign. For example – www.adidas.com/sale or www.suyamas.com/coupon
For digital signage that is at eye level, make use of QR codes to create omni-channel experiences that can drive customers to visit your brand’s online presence simply by scanning the QR codes onto their smart phones. These interactive QR code campaigns placed on bus shelters, urban panels, at point of sale, and so on are very effective at reaching consumers who are on the path to purchase. QR codes also provides the flexibility of creating different landing pages for different goals and actions in mind for various promotions.
Creative thinking and strategic planning for outdoor advertising results in bringing to light some of the most impactful creative ideas. With these tips in mind, you can launch attention-grabbing outdoor campaigns that not only attract and engage consumers but drive them to take action, resulting in a better outcome for your brand.