More and more, my colleagues in the marketing department think of billboard advertising as a waste of money. After all, no one really pays attention to advertising billboards anymore, do they? The billboards can’t dance around or make noise to attract you. Besides that, most of the time you have passed them by within a minute of first seeing them. Given this, some people argue, what is the point?
When I hear these kinds of opinions, however, I am sure to point out the fact that they are misguided. Yes, there are some weaknesses to advertising through billboards, but then again, there are weaknesses to any kind of ads. For example, when people are on the net and they see a banner pop up, they can just close it. If a commercial comes up on the TV while they are watching it, they can – and do – just change the channel. And don’t even get me started on the flaws of mailing list advertising.
Given all of these factors, then, it is no surprise that in many areas, the billboard advertising is not only continuing to flourish, but actually growing in popularity. One of the best things about them is that you can not turn them off. Other forms of advertising can be switched off or looked away from, but advertising billboards most often loom up in front of drivers. You don’t have to look straight at them, but I can almost guarantee that you will notice them no matter how hard you try to avoid them. Even if you can block out advertising billboards from time to time, if you pass the same ones every day on your way to work, you are bound to see them.
Another great thing about advertising billboards is that they catch people when they are out and about. Let’s face it, when people are sitting at home they are less likely to move. Often, no matter how tantalizing a meal looks, or how high tech a new computer looks, they will be unmoved to buy. When people are out in the city and they see advertising billboards, by contrast, they are much more likely to visit that restaurant or that shop and make a purchase. This doesn’t always hold for big bucks items, but it certainly does for the small ones. Advertising billboards convince people to go to one restaurant over another every day! This is only one small piece of evidence of their effectiveness.