Is Billboard Advertising Effective for Local Businesses?

There are several ways to advertise your business to potential customers in your areas, such as local newspaper ads, online banner ads, and the ubiquitous yellow pages (which aren’t even printed anymore). But have you ever considered billboard advertising? Billboards are enormous, eye-catching signs along major highways and side streets that can promote your business to drivers who are simply passing through or drivers who are going out of their way to get somewhere else. However, does billboard advertising work? Are there benefits to using this type of advertising over something like Google AdWords?


What are billboards used for these days?
It’s hard to believe, but at one time, billboards were a revolutionary form of advertising—the first examples of mass media. Today, in an era when everyone has seen almost every ad imaginable, there’s no question that they’re less effective than they used to be. Quite a few companies have stopped using them altogether. However, there are still reasons why you might want to consider investing in these relics of another age.


How do local businesses benefit from billboard advertising?
The most significant reason to advertise on a billboard is also one of its most important benefits: reach. Specifically, billboards have an incredibly high visual impact (often 20 feet tall or more significant), allowing advertisers to get their message in front of thousands of people every day. Unlike other advertising options, almost everyone can see billboards regardless of whether they’re looking out their window, commuting in a car, or walking down a busy street.


What do you need to know before deciding on a billboard ad campaign?
Before you decide to spend on billboard advertising, ask yourself if it’s something your business needs. Yes, you can stand out from your competitors and capture new customers with a large sign. But before dropping $5,000 or more on one, take into account other options that could achieve similar results at a lower cost. For example, online banner ads and social media marketing are less expensive than billboards yet can still drive significant amounts of traffic in a relatively short amount of time (there are many reasons for this, but more people are looking at their phones than driving by billboards). If you plan to advertise on billboards anyway, consider some factors when selecting which company to work with.


How much does it cost to advertise using billboards locally?
An internet search of billboard cost will bring up several results based on size, where you are located, and other factors. The best way to find out how much it will cost is to call local companies in your area and ask about their advertising rates. Try to shop around as much as possible for billboard advertising costs so that you know what you’re getting into when it comes time to put an ad together. Be sure to look at multiple companies, especially if your business has specific needs or wants from their billboards (i.e., backlit vinyl signs might be more effective in certain areas.)


Yes, outdoor advertising can work well. But it is important to note that billboard ads are by no means a silver bullet. Outdoor advertising is a powerful tool in your marketing arsenal, but you need to supplement it with other strategies as well.