16 Nov 2015
A billboard is an outdoor or out-of-home (OOH) advertising. It is used to reach a wide audience while they are outside of their homes without access to television or the Internet. In the Philippines, it seems every major road or highway has static billboards, LED billboards, and banners. But recently, more and more people have been putting up adverts on the Internet. In the time of online marketing and advertising, the question is: does anyone still look at billboards?
A Different Form of Analytics
Unlike online ads, it’s a little more difficult to track the effectiveness of billboards. With online ads, you can easily use different tracking software like Google Analytics to see how many people see and click on the ad or on your call-to-action button.
You will be able to see the amount of time they spent on your website, too. But that’s not the case with billboards. You cannot use Google Analytics to see the amount of people who have seen the billboard. However, there is a way to measure the volume of people that will be able to see it: through measuring the amount of traffic a road, a highway, or a specific area gets.
Since billboards are erected near areas where there is a high volume of cars and/or people coming and going, you can just measure the amount of traffic for both cars and pedestrians in that area. If there are 30, 000 thousand cars or commuters who passes through any of your chosen areas, that would mean you have 30, 000 possible new customers.
Awareness is the Key
It’s true that of the 30, 000 people who can see your billboard, there is no guarantee that every one of those will actually purchase the products you are offering; but the thing with advertisements is that there is a guarantee that a significant percentage of the 30, 000 will.
So how will you measure effectiveness in the end? By focusing on awareness.
Think about Coca-Cola, a famous brand of soda that originated from Atlanta. In fact, it’s so famous that people started to refer to sodas in general as Coca Cola. That’s called top of mind awareness.
The same thing happened with Kodak, Xerox, and Colgate: brands that became so popular they were the first things people thought of when someone says picture, photocopy, and toothpaste. Amazing isn’t it? It’s the status that brands aspire to become — to be a household name.
And that is what billboards are for. You see, billboards might not be the best platform to convince people to go straight to the store and buy your product, but it’s one of the best ways to help people recall your product.
That is why many advertisers are still paying for billboard ads, so much so that EDSA is overpopulated with them. That is why companies, in their desire to be the leading brand in their respective fields, pay for the best billboard spots where more commuters can see their ads.
Through constant exposure, these advertisers are aiming for recall instead of immediate purchase. After all, if your brand is the first thing on the public’s mind when thinking of restaurants, body lotion, or whatever your brand is about, who cares about immediate purchase? In the long run, top of mind awareness will help improve your sales.
So are billboard ads effective? Yes. Billboards are definitely one of the most helpful platforms out there that can help you succeed. It’s a powerful means to make your brand more recognizable. And in the end, top of mind awareness leads to longtime success — something that every business aspire to achieve.