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8 Pros and Cons of Outdoor Advertising

There are many ways to advertise a brand and business today. From the internet to traditional direct marketing opportunities, it can be difficult to know which way is the best way to spend your advertising dollars. Yet with so many choices available, outdoor advertising is still a very popular option.

What are the pros and cons of outdoor advertising? Here are some of the key points to consider to determine if this attractive marketing effort is right for your brand and business.

What Are the Pros of Outdoor Advertising?

1. It is very affordable.
Outdoor advertising is one of the most cost effective methods of marketing from an exposure standpoint. Advertising on a billboard, a bench, or within a mall can create customer impressions for just pennies on the dollar. In high exposure areas, outdoor advertising can even be cheaper than the cost of internet impressions.

2. It creates an immediate impact.
When a prospect is looking for something that your brand and business is able to offer, then your advertisement will make an immediate impact. The prospect may even reach out to contact you simply because you’ve included a phone number, an email address, or a website.

3. You can lead prospects to comprehensive research.
QR codes allow consumers to do their own research while their out shopping for products or services. They can determine which value proposition is the best for them, which reduces the overall costs your brand and business faces since the consumer does the research instead of you. When you get a contact, you’re more likely to get a prospect that is almost all of the way through your sales funnel.

4. You can create impulse buys.
Ever notice why drinks, magazines, and candy bars are near the cashier? Because as you stand in line, you might feel hungry – so you grab some candy. You might feel thirsty, so you grab something to drink. You get bored, so you grab something to read to pass the time. Outdoor advertising does the same thing, but on a larger scale. It can even direct consumers to a specific location so they can experience immediate gratification – which is at the heart of an impulse buy.

What Are the Cons of Outdoor Advertising?

1. There is no guarantee for success.
You can place outdoor advertising out in a high traffic area and gather zero new customers from the effort. Just because you’re advertising doesn’t mean you have a product or service that people want. Expecting to gain new revenues through this type of marketing effort is really an unrealistic goal.

2. It may not always be an affordable option.
High traffic areas will always cost more for outdoor advertising. This means the cost per impression could be much higher for some brands and businesses than other advertising opportunities. Each advertising opportunity should be examined thoroughly so that all costs can be compared to internal metrics to determine if there is the possibility of value.

3. Prospects might not remember your contact information.
On the radio, you’ll hear a narrator offer a phone number 7-10 times over the course of 30 seconds because that helps the listener be able to remember the number when they’re ready to make a call. TV advertising may flash a website, a phone number, or other contact details to help them stick at the top of a prospect’s mind. Outdoor advertising doesn’t have that opportunity. Some advertising may only be seen for seconds at a time. It can be difficult to remember a phone number or website when the total prospect exposure is just 3-5 seconds.

4. Vandalism is a real possibility.
You know what your advertising will look like on TV. You’ll know what it sounds like on the radio. You’ll know it’s structure when it is on the internet. With outdoor advertising, you don’t have this knowledge. Vandalism can happen at any time, which means consistent inspections are necessary to maintain the value of this marketing effort. Even if the advertising provider pays for the restoration of your advertising when it is vandalized, you’re still losing potential customers until it is fully restored.

The pros and cons of outdoor advertising show that it can be a useful marketing advantage if a brand and business makes smart placement decisions. Look for low cost, high exposure areas where there is interest in what you’re offering. That will allow you to take advantage of the benefits with lower risks of the disadvantages appearing.

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