if you have a fertile imagination, billboards present an irresistible challenge because they’re a flexible platform. you can:
- have material blow in the wind
- grow something on them
- utilize the rain and other elements
- feature strategic lighting, strategic cutouts, mirrors, odd shapes, things moving, spinning, dripping, flashing, twinkling, or smoking.
- create interactive billboards with cameras (as in Times Square)
- waft a fragrance
as Luke Sullivan pointed out in “Hey Whipple, Squeeze This!” if you create a mediocre billboard, it’s going to be mediocre on a grand scale, so it has to be interesting.
McDonald’s had greens growing on a billboard to advertise its fresh salad bar offerings, and created a round egg billboard that cracked open every day to advertise breakfast meals.
if you can think of a way for people to interact with your billboard, then you’re golden: they can text in a response to a question or game, or stand before a camera to be blown up onto a big screen. maybe readers could pick basil leaves off a billboard for Primavera Spaghetti Sauce, or capture bubbles spewing from a billboard for Mr. Bubbles. birth announcements posted on the Target Baby Facebook page were translated to a billboard in the los angeles Kodak Theater, then a picture was taken to pass along to the proud parents, as an example of interactivity from Wieden + Kennedy (portland).
highway billboards should be eye-catching and inspire comment or action. drivers typically have 8 seconds to read them, unless they’re stuck in traffic for hours, in which case, an interactive billboard would be perfect for whiling the hours away.
check out these incredible billboards, and let us know your favorites: 50 extraordinary and attractive billboards.
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