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  • Writer's pictureBogosi Motshegwa


Are billboards targeted at cars or pedestrians? Most billboard executions are not visually effective. Visually effective meaning, you don’t get the full message as you are waiting at the robots/traffic lights. You’d literally have to get out of the car and at least get bout 10 – 20 meters closer, to read it, and get the full message.

This post was inspired by a certain brand bank. I won’t mention names, because it will feel personal.

But besides that particular billboard execution, OOH execution seems to be a challenge, and I’m not quite sure whether this is a South African thing or whether it is a global challenge. Most of the OOH executions I see are not visually effective.

How to be visually effective on a billboard/OOH

I think the only time when marketers and agencies pay attention to detail when it comes to OOH, is when there is a deliberate ask to make the billboard visually effective. On a regular brand building day, there isn’t much effort put in ensuring the OOH communication is effective.

Below are some key boxes to tick when designing OOH executions:

· Say less (you know what they say, it is more)

· Have a clear single-minded message

· Use the white space effectively - just because the OOH space itself is expensive doesn’t mean you have fill canvas with more words

· Make sure your call to action is visible and clear (although many argue that OOH drive online search, whether direct or through search engine, I’m not sure, I don’t have the data for that)

· Design the message for the context of the medium itself - Your billboard or OHH doesn’t have to be a replica of your TVC or Social Media or Print ad. You can iterate messaging that fits within the context, but ensuring that it delivers on your strategic intent and key message

Happy billboard and OOH making. Put more considered thought into it. Remember that everything counts towards effective brand marketing, there’s nothing that a brand should do, just so that they can say they’ve done it.

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