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10 Types of Outdoor Advertising

Types of outdoor advertising thumbnail

Outdoor advertising can take many forms. Some are small, like billboards, while others, like building wraps, are large. They all have advantages and disadvantages, so selecting suitable outdoor advertising for your company is critical.

What Is Outdoor Advertising?

Outdoor advertising, also called out-of-home (OOH) advertising, involves promoting products or services in public places such as sidewalks, bus benches, or billboards. A business can use outdoor advertising to reach people who are out and about and can be a cost-effective way to reach a large audience. It can be used to target a specific demographic and can be a convenient way to reach people.

Why Use Outdoor Advertising?

  1. A cost-effective way to reach your target audience.
  2. Can be seen by a large number of people, increasing your brand’s visibility.
  3. Increases the effectiveness of your advertising by targeting specific locations.
  4. Promotes special events or sales.
  5. Create a personalized message for your target audience.
  6. A flexible marketing tool that can be used to achieve a variety of marketing goals.
  7. Builds brand awareness and creates an association with your product or service.
  8. Reach a local, regional, or national audience.
  9. Complements other marketing efforts.

1. Billboard Advertising

The most popular and effective form of outdoor advertising is billboard advertising, which promotes a product, service, or event using large, printed signs.

It is common for billboards to be placed along busy roads and highways where motorists and passengers can easily see them. Despite their size and visibility, billboards are an effective form of advertisement. When appropriately used, they can generate much interest and attention for a product, service, or event.

Example of Advertising on a Billboard
Example of Advertising on a Billboard

For effective billboard advertising, here are some tips:

  1. Communicate clearly and concisely.
  2. Use eye-catching and understandable images.
  3. Place your billboard in a high-traffic area.
  4. Choose a location where your target audience would be interested in seeing your billboard.
  5. Your billboard should be giant enough for people to see and read it from a distance.
  6. Use bright, attention-grabbing colors.
  7. Use attractive fonts and text layouts.
  8. Engage your audience with enticing offers.
  9. Determine which messages and images are most effective by testing them out.
  10. Make necessary adjustments based on your results.


Despite many advertisers moving away from static billboards to digital and mobile options, there are still some advantages to this older form of advertising. A static billboard is typically cheaper to build and maintain than a digital one, and it also has a captive audience—drivers stuck in traffic with nothing else to do but look at the billboards.

Last but not least, billboards are often harder to ignore than other forms of advertising, so they are more likely to be seen and remembered.


A mobile billboard is a form of outdoor advertising that places billboards on a trailer or truck and drives it around busy areas. In active regions like downtown streets or highways, this type of advertising is a great way to reach a broad audience with a message or product.


Digital billboards are computer-controlled electronic displays that show high-resolution images and videos. Digital billboards can display static or animated advertising content and can be rented on a short- or long-term basis by businesses. They are generally located along highways.

2. Augmented Reality Billboards

Using augmented reality billboards as a part of outdoor advertising is one of the latest trends in outdoor advertising. Augmented reality allows users to interact with digital content in real life. Users can view and interact with three-dimensional images superimposed on their real-world surroundings using a smartphone or other device.

In addition to providing viewers with an immersive and interactive experience, augmented reality billboards can be used to create interactive games and quizzes they can play in public spaces. For example, users can view a three-dimensional image of a product and purchase it through their smartphones.

3. Lamp Posts

A lamp post advertisement involves attaching a banner or poster to a lamp post, usually using specialized attachments. A lamp post banner or sign is usually about 2 meters wide and 3 meters tall, although this can vary depending on the lamp post’s size.

Lamp post advertising is particularly effective in busy areas with high foot traffic, such as shopping districts, business districts, and residential areas where people walk to and from work or run errands. You should place the banners or posters at eye level to make them easily seen.

3. Bridges

Advertisements can be installed on bridges by hanging banners or signs or using the bridge as a canvas to paint a mural or other ad. Bridge advertising is a form of outdoor advertising that utilizes a city’s infrastructure.

An advertising campaign on a bridge is an excellent way to get visibility in a large city since bridges are often near major thoroughfares or busy areas. For example, if a company is looking to reach commuters in a city through bridge advertising, advertising on a bridge that spans a busy highway would be a wise choice.

Advertisements on bridges can also be used to support local teams and events, such as banners and signs promoting a significant sporting event in a city.

4. Guerilla Advertising

Businesses must find new and innovative ways to reach their target audience as marketing trends shift from traditional television and radio ads to digital and interactive advertising. Despite its apparent advantages, guerrilla advertising is an often overlooked form of marketing.

In general, guerrilla advertising is any marketing campaign conducted unconventionally, often involving unusual tactics or surprising the audience. To create an experience that the viewer will remember long after seeing the ad, we aim to create a memorable and impactful one.

You can learn more about guerilla marketing from this 5-minute video with examples:

Guerrilla advertising campaigns can be executed in a variety of ways, but some common strategies are:

  1. Ambush marketing: Companies use this technique to get their message out by hijacking another company’s event or sponsorship opportunity. In hopes of being seen on TV during the Super Bowl, a company might give out branded t-shirts or hats to people lining up outside the stadium.
  2. Street teams: This is when people gather to promote a product or brand, either by handing out free samples, flyers, or other promotional items.
  3. Flash mobs: A flash mob occurs when a group of people suddenly appear in a public place and perform an elaborate dance or other types of performance to promote a new product or service.
  4. Guerilla projection: It is a method of displaying video or images on public surfaces without the owner’s permission. This is commonly used in high-traffic areas to reach a large audience.
  5. Building wraps: A banner or other promotional material is placed on the exterior of a building to generate buzz about a new product or service.
  6. Vehicle wraps: Wrapping a vehicle in a promotional message is a great way to generate brand awareness and reach a large audience through mobile advertising.
  7. Street art: The practice of leaving branded messages or images in public spaces can take many forms, such as graffiti, wheat pasting, and street chalk art.
  8. Public relations stunts: A company will do something outrageous to gain media attention, such as setting a world record, hiring a celebrity spokesperson, or creating a controversial advertisement.

5. Point-of-Sale Displays

A point-of-sale display is marketing material placed near the register or point of purchase in a store. The purpose of a point-of-sale display is to catch customers’ attention and persuade them to purchase a product. In addition to being available in cardboard, plastic, and metal, point-of-sale displays can also be temporary or permanent.

There are 10 types of point-of-sale displays

1. Signs and Posters

Signs and posters are the simplest and most budget-friendly type of POS display. They can be used to advertise specific products, promote sales or discounts, or brand your store. You can place signs or posters on walls, shelves, or anywhere near the point of sale.

2. Shelf Displays

Displays on shelves are standard in grocery stores and other retail establishments. They can be used to promote products, increase brand awareness, or drive sales. Various materials are available for shelf displays, including paper, cardboard, wood, or metal.

3. Coupons

POS displays that feature coupons can be a great way to boost sales, especially for slower-moving items. Coupons can be placed on POS displays or given to customers in person.

4. Interactive Displays

You can engage customers and excite them about your products with interactive POS displays. A new product launch or experiential marketing campaign often involves interactive displays. These can range from simple games and contests to elaborate virtual reality experiences.

5. Floor Displays

Displays on the floor are ideal for promoting special offers, new products, or seasonal items. You can customize the shows with your company name, slogan, and contact information.

6. Countertop Displays

The countertop display is smaller than the floor display, but it’s just as effective. In addition to promoting impulse purchases, they can also be placed near the register or in high-traffic areas. The materials used to make countertop displays are cardboard, wood, acrylic, and metal.

7. Window Displays

Use window displays as POS displays to promote your brand, products, or sales. Window displays are usually displayed in stores’ front windows but can also be displayed in other high-traffic areas. You can create static or interactive window displays based on your objectives.

8. Hanging Displays

Another type of POS display is the hanging display, which can be hung from a ceiling, wall, or rack. Hanging displays are typically made of cardboard, paper, or plastic.

9. Trade Show Displays

It is an advertisement used to promote businesses or products at trade shows. It can vary in size and style, but it usually incorporates some graphic design to emphasize the company or product. Additionally, trade show displays typically include a space for attendees to leave their contact information so they can be followed up after the event.

10. Sampling Stations

A sampling station is a physical location where potential customers can interact with a product or service before they buy it. This could be a food or beverage tasting, a product demonstration, or a short service trial. Company sampling stations provide a great way to connect with potential customers and secure customer feedback. They can also help collect feedback from customers.

6. Transit Advertising

The transit advertising industry uses buses, trains, trams, and subways because they offer a captive audience, frequent exposure, and the opportunity to target specific demographics and areas. Businesses of all sizes can benefit from transit advertising because it can reach a large number of people in a short time.

7. Retail Advertising

Retail advertising is a type of outdoor advertising that promotes special sales or events at a retail store. It can be found on signs or billboards near the store window. Newspaper, television, and radio advertisements are examples of retail advertising.

In retail advertising, stores promote special sales or events, such as holidays or clearance sales, to encourage customers to shop there and increase interest in their products or services. Retail advertising is often used to announce brand-new products or services and promote upcoming events.

In retail, ads are usually short-term and designed to create a sense of urgency. They are often placed close to the store so customers will see them as soon as they pass. Combining this type of advertising with other marketing efforts, such as in-store displays or promotions, is the most effective way to market your business.

8. Street Furniture

Advertising on street furniture is a great way to reach people in the city. Here are 9 of the most popular types:

  1. Bus shelters
  2. Street benches
  3. Phone booths
  4. Street lamps
  5. Newsstands
  6. Taxi cabs
  7. Subways
  8. Airports
  9. Buildings

9. Aerial advertisement

The two most common types of aerial advertising are skywriting and banner towing, which uses lighter-than-air aircraft to create a spectacle in the sky. Aerial advertising is made up of two types: skywriting and banner towing. A skywriting message is written in the sky by an aircraft using smoke-emitting devices. During World War I, this advertising method was widely used to boost morale during the early 1900s. 

Banner towing, the practice of pulling a banner behind an aircraft while in flight, is a form of aerial advertising commonly used to promote concerts and festivals. Aerial advertising has the advantage of reaching a large audience. As a costly marketing strategy, it is essential to consider your goals and budget before deciding whether or not this is the right one.

10. A-frames

A-frames, also known as sandwich boards, are outdoor advertising usually seen on sidewalks and high-traffic areas. They are generally double-sided and feature a graphic or message on both sides. By capturing pedestrians’ attention, A-frames are an effective way to increase foot traffic to your business.

It is possible to employ A-frames for various advertising purposes, such as promoting sales or special events, advertising upcoming products or services, or directing customers to your business. Additionally, A-frames can serve as directional signs for your business, helping customers find it. Use bright colors and eye-catching graphics to make your A-frame stand out. Make sure your message is clear and concise to grab the attention of your target audience.

How To Design Outdoor Ads?

If you don’t have in-house designers, who are frankly quite expensive, you can hire a freelancer or an agency to create your outdoor ads. Depending on the consistency of your graphic design needs and your budget, there are a few options:

If you need designs consistently…

For other graphic design needs, graphic design agencies are the most cost-efficient option. Currently, unlimited graphic design for a monthly fee is the most popular, which is less expensive than hiring an in-house designer.

If you need just this one…

Crowdsourced services and freelancers are your best bet for one-time projects.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

What is the most widely used form of outdoor advertising?

The most common form of outdoor advertising is billboards, which are large signs placed along highways and other high-traffic areas. They are incredibly effective at reaching a large audience.

What are the benefits of outdoor advertising?

Outdoor advertising has many benefits, including the ability to reach a broad audience, the flexibility to change messages quickly, and the relatively low cost of production and placement. It is also very effective to target a specific audience with outdoor advertising, such as commuters or residents.

How effective is outdoor advertising?

Advertisements placed in public spaces, like billboards or buses, can effectively reach a broad audience but are often expensive and non-targeted.

How can I make my outdoor advertising more effective?

To make outdoor advertising more effective, choose the right location, design an eye-catching ad, and ensure it’s well-lit.


  1. Wikipedia Contributors. Point of sale display. Wikipedia. Published September 5, 2022. Accessed November 19, 2022. 
  2. Nguyen, Ginny. “9 Types of Outdoor Advertising (with Real-World Examples)“. Penji, May 24, 2021.

About your guide

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Matic Broz

Matic Broz is a photographer, graphic designer, and stock photographer. For over ten years he's been helping photographers improve their photos and graphic designers find the best images for their designs. His work has been featured by Lifewire, Skylum, and PetaPixel. In his free time, he enjoys photography, hiking, and petting random dogs. Read more

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