Wednesday, August 5, 2015

The Bright Future of Digital Billboards

“You can do it! 4 days until the weekend!” were the encouraging words I read on my drive home Tuesday evening. These words flashed before my eyes on a fancy new digital billboard. Chances are, you’ve began to see more and more of this new advertising technology as you commute to work too. But what’s the scoop? Are digital billboards effective for advertisers?

Nielsen constructed a new study to answer those exact questions. The Outdoor Advertising Association of America released some of the research results. Digital billboards are making a huge impact with 75% and 60% of respondents claiming they saw a digital billboard in the past month and week, respectively. Not only do people recall seeing these billboards but 74-89 percent of travelers recall at least one specific ad on said billboard.

Other key highlights from the Nielsen study include:

·        71% said, “ads on digital billboards stand out more than ads online”
·        70% agreed digital billboards provide current and important information
·        65% think the medium is a “good way to learn about new businesses in the area”
·        55% of travelers who noticed a digital billboard in the past month were highly engaged, recalling the message on the screen every time or most of the time they passed by a digital billboard
·        46% said, “ads on digital billboards stand out more than ads on TV”
·        22% reported changing their plans in order to visit the digital billboard advertiser

Like any form of advertisement, there are pros and cons of digital billboards. A single digital board is the home to many advertisements that are played on a loop making it impossible for each commuter to see each advertisement in a single trip. However, as the statistics show, viewers are more interested and attentive to brightly displayed digital billboards. So, despite the smaller reach, the rate of return stands strong.
Traditional billboards are usually more permanent choice due to long lead times and the time it takes to create and install the advertisement whereas, while digital advertisements are much more flexible in their abilities, making my weekend countdown accurate day after day.

The beauty of digital is the ability to give commuters an ever changing and engaging message. Not only have these digital billboards proven to be successful, but 72% of the surveyed population thinks that digital billboards are, “a cool way to advertise” and who doesn’t love to be “cool”?

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