The Complete Guide to Understanding & Boosting Billboard ROI

Do billboards really deliver good results? Some marketers believe it is impossible to measure its returns on investment. But the advancing digital techs and tools make it easier to measure outdoor marketing impacts.

Even with this, measuring billboard ROI can be more complicated than other marketing options like digital and online. This article covers billboard campaign tools, campaign performance assessment, and goals.

How Effective is Billboard Advertising?

The Complete Guide to Understanding & Boosting Billboard ROI

Outdoor marketing can deliver excellent results if you do it rightly. But several factors may only work out if you are well-versed in marketing. You can partner with specialists to measure billboard ROI, manage and install ads, and plan campaigns.

In general, billboard marketing gives a higher return on investments than many other outdoor marketing techniques. Research in 2023 indicated that billboard marketing delivers up to 86% recall rate. With a $2 to $7 average CPMs, billboard ads feature the lowest cost per impression.

Thus, it is the most cost-effective option among high-impact ads like print and television. A 2022 poll indicated that 89% of US adults admit to noticing billboards in the streets. This figure implies a broader reach.

While billboards vastly boost brand awareness and recognition, they can also lure audiences to take action. The 2022 research in America also found that 80% of adults noticing billboard ads felt inspired to learn more.

Factors like exposure frequency, design, message, audience, and location heavily impact the billboard ROI. It is critical to pick high-traffic locations that the target audience visits regularly and avoid obstructions like buildings and trees. You must also use high-contrast colors and large fonts to make the message simple to read.

Above all, using exciting taglines, images, and elements of humor or surprise will intrigue the audience to take action. Consider message timing to boost billboard ROI. Time of the day, times of the year, and events like holidays will impact your reach.

Billboard Advertising Statistics

Research shows that about 82% of out-of-home digital ads viewers can recall a billboard they saw more than one month ago. Data indicates that 32% of viewers like billboard ads, while 9% are enthusiasts. Yet, 41% of internet users do not like online ads.

Outdoor advertising will, therefore, give you a higher recall rate than online, print, radio, podcasts, live streaming, and television ads. This statement explains why top brands have increasingly opted for billboard ads over the past months. OHAAA data indicates that about 79% of top advertisers raised their spending on billboards in 2021.

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More info shows that 32 of the 100 top billboard advertisers doubled their spending, while 27 companies are D2C or tech brands. The rise in digital billboard ads also marks a considerable aspect of billboard stats. For instance, 9,600 of the 350,000 billboards across the US are digital.

Further details revealed that most consumers that billboard ads reach, take action. Another research in 2020 concluded that 35% of the target audience would likely search online or visit the website after seeing a billboard. 20% of the customers that billboards convert recommend the brand or product.

Azoth Analytics report in 2023 showed that the worldwide digital billboard industry in 2021 hit more than $18.5 billion. The figure might increase by about 7% within five years. The increase would translate to about a $1.2 billion revenue upsurge.

Billboard Advertising ROI

Although digital billboards are becoming the most popular option, they come with more expenses. Research in 2022 concluded that digital billboards could attain up to 38% return on investments. On the other hand, traditional billboards also reach a wider audience with a 40% ROI.

In any case, billboard ads can suit many functions, including campaigns to boost website traffic. Its ROI might appear lower than other content marketing approaches, but it is worth the investment. Remember, the most powerful feature of billboard ads is brand recognition. Marketers may measure the return on ad spend (ROAS) instead of the ROI.

Nonetheless, research is crucial to attaining anything from 3:1 to 5:1 ROI from billboard ads. Planning well to develop and measure the billboard ad’s effectiveness is vital for improving the billboard’s return on investment. For example, you can add a call to action with a unique QR code to track conversions.

Billboard Advertising Cost

Billboard ads cost vary based on the estimated reach, total traffic, and location. The service provider charges monthly, ranging from $250 in rural areas to $50,000 in high traffic cities. Thus, the average billboard advertising cost is about a $850 monthly rate.

In the meantime, digital billboards may cost a little higher than traditional ones. Although some digital billboard ads could cost as low as $10 daily, the monthly rate is about $2,100 per campaign. Since billboards are out-of-home (OOH) ads, they have an OOH rating that ultimately impacts their cost and value to advertisers.

Nonprofit organizations like Geopath provide OOH ratings using media and technology data to gauge impressions. Hence, billboard companies may access this data to help them improve their ROI. Geopath follow several factors to determine an OOH rating. The three main factors include impressions, demographics, and circulation.

Circulation describes the estimated number of the audience that could see the billboard based on data from local transport authorities. Demographics like traffic characteristics, income level, gender, and age from travel firms and local authorities impact the cost.

You can gauge the likely cost based on factors like traffic speed, billboard visibility, distance from the road, billboard size, and circulation. But it is not about the cost of renting the ad space alone. It also involves other expenses such as construction, printing, and design. The design can cost $2,000 to $100,000 depending on the quality.

Application Range

Outsourcing the billboard design task will involve a fee of $150 or more, depending on the design’s complexity. For example, a 3D animation design for digital billboards will cost up to $1,000 per hour. All in all, these rates may vary depending on the ads’ creativity needs.

Factors that Impact Billboard ROI

Apart from proper planning, location is another factor impacting your billboard ROI. Your billboard must stand out from the crowd to record higher audience frequency, reach, and impressions. Other factors that influence the billboard’s ROI include:

  • Design

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Your billboard ROI varies based on your design and messaging approach. It should capture the target audience’s attention in seconds and give them a clear & concise message. Besides, the billboard will deliver better results if it is visually appealing. The design layout will facilitate desired actions and increase the customer recall rate. 

Remember to adjust aptly since different billboard formats have different limitations and strengths. For instance, digital boards suit dynamic & interactive ads with real-time aspects like news, sports scores, and weather. Static billboards require regular maintenance and reprinting, which makes them more expensive and time-consuming. 

  • Budget      

Since different billboards design and options impact the ROI, their costs also vary. The marketing plan could become prohibitively expensive or affordable depending on your location. Advertising on billboards in major metropolitan areas costs more. 

The company size will determine how much you invest in billboards and your reach. Besides, combining it with other marketing approaches will depend on the budget but could raise the ROI. For instance, billboards work well with social media marketing. 

  • Campaign Goals

What is the objective of the billboard ad? You could combine Spectaculars and Bulletins formats for high-density places to significantly impact or generate awareness. A new brand that wants attention should consider a more strategic location than competitors to increase the return on investment. 

  • Target audience

Locating your target audience and listing their daily patterns and demographics is critical. How would you reach a daily mass transit audience that lives in shanty towns? You may consider locations like transit units and neighboring routes. 

More extensive campaigns combine billboard formats and outdoor units to reach their target audience. For instance, the return on investment will rise if you invest in bus wraps, interior car cards, and transit posters. 

Define your target audience and flex to reach them where they spend most of their time. Developing a mapping for your marketing campaign and considering a holistic approach is vital. Also, use available data about your target market to raise the ROI. 

  • Location & Unit type 

The billboard location determines the marketing campaign’s cost, directly impacting the return on investments. Sites with high-traffic areas that could deliver excellent results cost more money. For instance, you will pay more for busy highways and high-density urban areas. 

However, costly billboards can deliver excellent results with a higher ROI. Newer unit types, like high-pixel digital billboards, will attract more costs but reach a broader target audience. It facilitates longer view distances and more flexible media schedules. 

  • Billboard Size & Competition

Larger billboards that serve a larger audience cost more money, which ties it to the ROI. The large screens suit a more extensive viewing distance while ensuring a perfect view angle for all your audience. 

Yet, competition for billboards in high-density neighborhoods could result in higher costs. This category involves locations that involve strict regulations but deliver excellent results.

  • Traffic Flow & Regulations

The traffic flow where you install the billboard will determine your reach. High-traffic pedestrian routes, highways, and busy roads can be excellent options for high visibility. But you must research local restrictions and regulations to comply with applicable laws. 

How to Measure Billboard Ads Success

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Setting clear billboard campaign goals will help you raise your engagement rate and boost your investment return through tracking metrics. You may seek help from an expert on how to track your results. Here are the four free effective ways to track billboard advertising ROI: 

  • Store Visitation Lift & Sales Data

You could raise your sales by mounting a billboard on the route to your shop. Data-based analysis on mobile apps can track your store visitation and the ads’ impact on your sales. The strategy defines the increase in sales during & after the campaign. 

  • Surveys

You can survey your brand favorability and recognition before & during the campaign to gauge its impact on brand awareness. It would be an excellent idea to ask the road users how often they notice your billboards. Other questions to include in the survey are overall effectiveness, location, design, choice & preferences, and comments. 

  • QR Codes

Since the Covid-19 outbreak, QR codes have become more popular and are a typical marketing strategy for businesses across numerous industries. They are easy to use and convenient for accessing info like hotel menus. 

You could use QR codes to amplify the billboard marketing campaign, luring customers to download your app, get a discount or learn more. Since the QR code will record its conversions, you can rate the billboard’s overall performance. But QR codes can only work if you combine the billboard approach with posters and interior car cards. 

  • Social Media & Hashtags

It is easier to track your billboard advertising ROI using social media hashtags. This approach allows you to reach a larger target audience since social media has impression benefits. Social media hashtags will help you evaluate your billboard return on investments based on engagement, shares, mentions, and new followers. 

How to Set Billboard Campaign Goals

It is possible to set your goals on billboard marketing beyond vanity plays & brand awareness. The marketing approach can be an excellent method for boosting all marketing funnel stages, including conversion and awareness. Here are tips for setting your billboard marketing goals:

  • Brand Affinity & Conversion

Besides several conversions, billboard ads can also boost brand trust and loyalty. Your objective should be to create a stronger customer relationship and encourage repeat business. Other goals include raising conversions and digital traffic. You can convert more sales, app downloads, website visitors, and QR code scans. 

  • Consideration

Billboard ads give the products a space in the real world, which helps to build brand credibility. It would help if you aimed to promote the product’s authenticity and lure more customers into craving it. 

  • Interest & Awareness

Billboards do not just inform the target audience about your brand. They also encourage them to develop an interest in your brand and research further. Aim to design a billboard that features memorable taglines and visuals. Remember, billboards perform better for brand launches, store openings, and brand awareness. 

How to Boost Billboard ROI

While options like social media are becoming more competitive, billboard ads have revolutionized to ensure an excellent return on investment. Thus, it remains a growing and practical marketing approach. They are a popular option for companies to launch new products and build brand recognition. Here are five tips to improve billboards’ ROI:

  • High-Impact Designs

Checking out other billboards that delivered an excellent return on investment will provide high-impact design tips. Designs with high-contrast colors, attractive images, distinct black lettering, and clear background will improve your results. 

You can maintain a consistent brand design to get more views. In other words, the target audience can associate the word fonts and colors with your company. Contrasting colors like white letters and a navy blue background will definitely stand out. 

Another tip would be to fit the logo prominently and use three to seven words alone. Besides, the billboard phrasing and the color scheme should match your brand image. You must avoid inserting CTAs like a URL and add your name instead. 

Most importantly, the font you apply must be easy-to-read and clean to ensure your message stands out. One image will appear clearer than many images, delivering better brand identity results.  

  • Time and Place

Advertisers set up billboards in a specific geographic location. Therefore, you should figure out your target audience’s areas and habits and place the boards where they can see them easily. Ads running on dynamic digital displays come with time as another impactful variable to leverage. 

You can run ads for breakfast products at specific times, such as mornings. Another demographic to consider would be the culture of the location. What is trending in that area? Try approaches like connecting to the target audience through jokes. 

  • Simplicity with Boldness

Road users will not stop at the billboard to check out your message since it is unsafe and unrealistic. You must focus on engagement, measuring awareness, and attribution because details like the URL won’t deliver good returns. The CTA must be simple yet impactful for your brand. 

In simple terms, keep everything on the billboard short & concise. Use a clear image to tell your story and avoid unnecessary words. Including a complex call to action on the billboards will hamper the returns. Use striking language, vibrant colors, and be bold. 

  • Build your Brand

Too much information on the billboard will hamper the impact of your brand identity. Design the billboard simply to let the world know you exist. Avoid sharing too much information and instead show what your company offers. 

  • Use Digital Billboards

Traditional vinyl static billboards have several limitations over digital billboards. Dynamic digital billboards allow advertisers to incorporate several designs, boosting the return on investment. Besides, it is easier to adjust through different adverts for the same product throughout the day. p6 outdoor nseled

The flexibility of using digital boards allows you to take a granular plan for your campaign objectives. You get complete control over messaging, design, place, and time. Therefore, digital boards can deliver excellent results for medium-sized firms and startups. It suits testing out new products and brand looks without prohibitive costs. 

Digital billboards will spread the risks by providing more dynamic ways to present different ads despite the marketing budget. Overall, they are an excellent medium for exciting and educating your customers. 

Billboard Installation & Design Tips for a Higher ROI

If you have an excellent plan and tangible goals for your billboard ads campaign, you expect a high ROI. But the design of the billboard advert will greatly impact your reach. Here are a few tips to help you create an amazing billboard design:

  • Make it Attractive & Memorable

The design that suits your billboard advertising campaign may vary based on where you locate it. Making it attractive will grab passersby’s attention and stand out from the crowd. It should tell a story and give a unique, memorable, and interesting CTA. 

It is crucial to induce emotional marketing tactics like cleverness, empathy, anger, and humor in the design. Research other creative & eye-catching billboards for insights. Depending on the industry, implement a technique to make your target audience smile. 

  • Tell a Short Story

The billboard’s message should be the key to an interesting journey. Utilize smart text and images to tell your target audience an interesting story. Make it simple for the moving audience to pick out the essence of the marketing campaign. 

  • Keep it Simple & Bold

Passersby and drivers have a few seconds to scan information on the ad. Therefore, it is critical to maintain a simple design to attain more views. Ensure bold & big fonts against clear background colors. Avoid script and narrow fonts while choosing colors that stand out. Moreover, avoid brown, blue, and green colors in rural areas. 

  • Consider the Location

Advertising in an area where you understand well will be easier for you to pick a suitable location. You will know exactly where the billboard stands out, ensuring a high-traffic site. The billboard design will also vary based on the location’s environment. 

Take advantage of inside jokes, nuances, nicknames, and sports teams to make the billboards more impressionable. These tricks could vary based on your target market and their related demographics. 

  • Field Investigation

To boost your billboard ROI, you should conduct a unified test based on parameters like brightness acceptance ability, luminous radiation range, topography, and the environment. Check out the suitable hosting plan before installation to ensure stable and normal equipment operations.

  • Equipment Construction

It is critical to distinguish between roof type, hanging, and wall advertising screens. This step will allow you to match the winch & crane in height & distance. Thus, you will enjoy a better ROI, easier installation, and flexible application. 

  • Adjust the Radiation Range

It would help if you always carried out the radiation range detection. The display screen may vary in construction perspectives since they have different radiations. Remember, the display’s location remains fixed, so it should serve all viewing angles to ensure balanced and normal caption info and image brightness from all angles. 

  • Maintenance & Inspection

The follow-up process involves various critical factors like heat dissipation and waterproof features. Check on the power supply line, cooling on both sides, rainproof range, and waterproof coating indication. These parts together promote good stability of text and image display. 

Unified maintenance & management of screens will allow timely replacement during damages or rust. Overall, the dot matrix light and high-tech backplane heat would create a conducive working condition for the billboards. 

7 Advantages and 3 Disadvantages of Billboard Marketing Strategy


  • Digital Options to Increase Sales

New digital screens provide compelling ad options. They feature attractive displays that showcase high-quality playable videos to attract viewers. In general, digital billboards have numerous benefits over traditional static displays.

They are timely since you can switch through different ads during the day. The billboards also allow more creativity since they are compelling, unique, and flexible. Above all, they use smart-location functions and GPS tech to integrate mobile app features. It can help to alert road users and direct them to your business location.

  • Greater Impressions & More Sales

Billboard ads can be an excellent option to increase brand impressions since they are an advertising approach that customers can remember, trust and notice. 37% of Americans see billboards, and up to 71% look at them intentionally.

Hence, billboards suit widening the profit margin and increase sales. Since the billboard has prolonged exposure, it can reach a diverse target audience that powers into sales. 68% of billboard adverts record a higher ROI impulsivity. 32% of American companies investing in billboards record a high turnover rate.

  • Reach a Captive Audience

Why is billboard advertising still a competitive marketing option with many content marketing techniques in the modern world? While more people own smartphones than cars, billboards deliver competing results since they target specific audiences.

  • More Exposure & Audience Diversity

Although many people spend time browsing through their screens, billboards can be an excellent option to supplement alternative digital ads. Cars are another rapidly evolving industry apart from computers. 

Since billboards increase exposure, they provide a reference for your consumers, attract new buyers, build customer trust and raise brand awareness. 

In simple terms, billboards can be an ideal tactic to communicate to a diverse and broader consumer range. Combining them with smaller bulletins and posters will reach various consumers and increase your marketing base.

  • Location Pros

Location is a vital factor for your overall billboard marketing campaign. The options for where to locate it will highly determine its return on investment. Placing the billboard at the site will allow you to reach public transportation users, pedestrians, and cyclists. Make sure to compare insights between downtown and highway roads.

Another geographic benefit would be directional information that lures the target audience to try your products. Consumer proximity is another benefit, as you can place the billboard where the services are vital. For instance, home improvement firms will advertise in a settlement neighborhood rather than an industrial area.

  • Always On

Marketing models like radio, TV, and the internet can only deliver results when the target audience switches them on. On the other hand, billboards will display the advert throughout the day to fetch more impressions. 

Besides, the audience will likely recall the crucial details even if they look at the billboards once. At least 28% of viewers notice the website and 26% the phone number.

  • Visibility

Bigger adverts can reach a broader audience and make more impressions. Unlike other methods that serve a few people concurrently, billboards have eye-catching sizes to communicate to customers from different angles. 

Although posters are the smallest billboard designs, they showcase vast information to commuters. Digital options have eye-catching designs for more views.


  • Weather Damage

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Some billboards may not withstand challenging situations like heavy rainfall. Other adverse conditions include excess moisture, lightning, and strong winds. It can pose a risk to commuters and result in destruction or minor damages.

  • Location Barriers

Poor billboard location can hamper its return on investment since it lowers visibility. Low visibility also works against the marketing campaign’s objective, which makes it critical to conduct extensive research beforehand.

  • Billboard Costs

Billboard advertising involves high costs for regulation & tax, design costs, and installation & maintenance. Although digital billboards can deliver better results, the price is usually high and only works for big companies.


Although digital advertising models like content marketing, apps, and search engine optimization are becoming more popular, billboards are evolving to stay relevant. They are a classic method to raise brand awareness and present your new products to a target audience. 

Tech companies and top-tier product firms spend a considerable amount on billboard advertising. But what could be the most suitable billboard advertising ROI calculator to suit your campaign? From QR codes to social media impact, there are many ways to track the progress. 

Nevertheless, it is critical to comply with all federal and national regulations before investing in billboard ads. Digital billboards could cost more money, but they can deliver excellent results in high-traffic sites. 

Do you want to invest in billboard marketing campaigns and get tangible results? Check out NSELED CLOUD for more tips and marketing plan advice. 

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