6 Ways To Improve Your OOH Advertising + Examples

Adam Hencz

July 25, 2022

Wall murals, billboards, flashing lights, bus shelters, and street furniture. These are just a few from the wide range of formats of OOH (out-of-home) advertising.

Outdoor marketing has recently made a significant rebound as it keeps linking brands with new audiences and introducing products to new segments.

It's not always about the number of clicks.

We have analyzed a handful of OOH campaigns and ran rapid performance tests with Predict to understand their strengths and reveal their flaws.

What makes OOH ad campaigns effective?

  • The time consumers are exposed to OOH advertising matches closely that of TV and is greater than any other major media. (JCDecaux)
  • OOH advertising is more widely regarded as an inescapable aspect of life, which causes less annoyance for consumers, while online ads are considered as being more intrusive.
  • They reach a wide range of people from almost all possible customer segments.
  • OOH ads give businesses a significant platform to promote a unified, compelling message along with their brand identity.

Design for one single goal in mind

When creating outdoor ads - and that is actually true to any other content format and medium - you must be very clear about your campaign's objectives and purpose. Simply because in the case of OOH advertising, you might have a large blank canvas at your disposal, but you should not fill it all with information and creative elements.

For OOH advertisements to be successful, they must prompt a clear and quick action. In other words, your creative should only highlight one call to action and promote one single idea.

The purpose of an outdoor ad could be:

  • Building brand awareness and strengthening brand memory
  • Promoting a great deal
  • Boosting sales for a specific channel
  • Delivering a key (public) message
This wall mural in Copenhagen’s busy transportation hub aims to promote a collaboration between Jyske Bank and Apple Pay, yet no major creative elements or colors recall the two brand’s identities, let alone hint at the core message.

Keep it simple

Your billboard advertisement only has a little time window to catch the attention of drivers or pedestrians. Keep your billboard design clean and simple to attract the most views. Avoid using small, script typefaces and instead use large, bold fonts with contrasting elements.

Combining the clarity of road signs with recognizable brand elements makes this McDonald’s billboard effortless to comprehend. Predict analysis shows almost 93% Image Clarity, pointing to the minimal complexity of the ad.

Aim for high contrast and legibility

The impact of using color contrasts for your OOH advertising materials is immediate. You can highlight specific elements of your message that will stand out right away, which is great for drawing attention. Generally speaking, the more contrast you use between your text, backdrop, and other elements, the easier your OOH ad will be spotted.

If your brand guidelines are rather restrained, this may be a difficult obstacle to overcome. However, keep in mind that creating for OOH is different from designing for other ad formats; you must make sure to better connect your omnichannel marketing content and that your brand strategy can adapt to various settings.

Brand logo positioning and stark color contrast are key to building awareness around Prada’s brand.

Avoid the corner of death

We have learned from our growing eye-tracking database that about 50% of all ads, including OOH marketing pieces, show their brand logo in the bottom-right corner. Just because of their placement, brand logos in the bottom-right corner are only seen by 4% of all potential customers. All of these ads are falling prey to what is referred to as the corner of death. With simple tests and tweaks, you can quickly reveal design flaws to launch OOH ads that perform outstandingly well in grabbing brand attention.

Spotify did a great job for brand recognition as they used an easy-to-read typeface and implemented vivid color contrasts. However, their billboards fail in building brand awareness since their brand name and logo have been exiled to the corner of death.

Consider the location

Outdoor advertising is extremely location-driven. In order to have the greatest impact, advertisers must think about where to place their ads. Different contexts allow us to tell different stories, make it possible to directly respond to location-specific situations or even allow brands to respond to competitors’ campaigns.

Advertisers today also have considerably more options for using location to their advantage and in a more flexible fashion than they did in the past. This is mainly due to the growth of digital OOH (DOOH) as well as other ad tech stacks. For instance, it is possible to comprehend the demographics of customers who are close to a specific OOH ad. Based on this dataset, companies can present dynamic adverts and automatically select the most appropriate version or message at any particular time.

Vly’s great ad response to Oatly’s campaign. However, since attention will likely first go to the simply designed Vly ad and then to Oatly’s poster, some passersby might not grasp the narrative link between the ads.

Use brand elements to evoke emotions

Bring out the best aspects of your brand to encourage people to engage with it. Not simply your target audience should be attracted by your campaigns. Thousands of people will notice your billboard, so exploit the common traits of human behavior and boost emotional attention around your ad.

Which beer enthusiast would not pour a free beer after a day at work? Consistent brand elements and a unique solution make this central-London Carlsberg billboard a great example of a tempting call to action.

Put your own designs to the test with ads that draw attention. Analyze your OOH campaign ideas and visual assets before they start roaming the streets with just a click of a button. Get a free demo for Predict and start bringing out the best of your brand today.

6 Ways To Improve Your OOH Advertising + Examples