Types of Outdoor Advertising

Types of Outdoor Advertising

Every business is looking to reduce its cost of customer acquisition and make the most profit out of it. However, irrespective of how amazing your product or service is, without the right marketing strategy, you won’t attract the right audience. 

With global advertising spending hovering around $522.5B, choosing the right type of outdoor advertising will help you make the most of your advertising budget. This article highlights these various forms of advertising and makes them stand out.

What Is Outdoor Advertising?

Outdoor advertising allows businesses to increase awareness by reaching audiences outside their homes and away from their phones and televisions. Usually, enterprises place these ads in public places and large gatherings, including highways, streets, stadia, transport hubs, buses, and other exposed locations. 

Different outdoor advertising signs offer precise results for many businesses. They range from billboards, taxi advertising, banners, point of sale signs, wallscapes, etc. If you want to buy outdoor advertising space, it is only right that you know the different types of outdoor advertising. Read on!

12 Types of Outdoor Advertising

Various types of outdoor advertising offering unique and engaging marketing approaches suitable for different businesses, audiences, and settings exist. While some strategies have been around for over a century, others have only been used for a few decades. Here is a rundown of 12 of the most effective and common outdoor advertising examples advertisers use

1. Billboards

Billboards are one of the oldest and most effective modes of advertising; they’ve been around since the 1830s and are still as effective as ever. Outdoor billboard advertising signs come in large sizes and are mostly found in high-traffic areas, including rail stations, highways, airports, bus stations, sports arenas, and streets.

Billboards are one advertising sign outdoors that businesses use to reach a wider audience, create more awareness, and advertise their products or services. They come in various designs, including static and digital billboards. They are particularly effective because the large size allows the audience to see the advertising content from various angles and far distances.

2. Banners

Another common type of outdoor advertising sign is banners. They come in various sizes, from small to large, usually in streets, buildings, and other walls. Banners are flexible and can come in the form of outdoor advertising flags, light-emitting diodes (LED) banner displays, printed papers, and vinyl.

Businesses use banners to promote products, services, events, festivals, concerts, and other upcoming local happenings. Aside from companies, churches, mosques, and other institutions use banners because they are visually appealing, less expensive, reach a wide audience when placed strategically, and increase brand awareness.

3. Mobile Advertising

Mobile advertising is one creative outdoor advertising method businesses started incorporating into their marketing efforts after Imperial Tobacco used it on Beeline bus windows in 1989. Mobile advertising billboards suit interstate outdoor advertising because businesses can reach many audiences while commuting. 

This is effective because advertisers use taxis, buses, trucks, and trailers that drive around the city or other targeted locations to showcase their ad content to a large audience. Over the years, mobile advertising has evolved, with manufacturers now producing mobile advertising signs in various forms, including state-of-the-art mobile LED displays, posters, and other outdoor advertising mobile signs.

P3.33 Taxi LED Display


4. Retail Advertising

When talking about the most effective forms of outdoor advertisement businesses use to reach customers and increase sales, retail advertising is one of the hive leaders. Retail enterprises leverage this type of outdoor advertising to promote products and services using signs and channels like print ads, banners, commercials, billboards, outdoor advertising flags near shop show glasses, walls, and LEDs for shop windows.

While retail advertising is one of the best outdoor advertising currently, for effective results,  it is essential that retailers place these ads strategically, so the audience can easily see them. Also, the ad message must be compelling; the content must be concise and visually appealing. Businesses that place these ads with their audience in mind will record a high footfall rate.

5. Point of Sale Advertising

POS advertising is one of the best outdoor advertising methods for businesses that want to influence customer buying decisions at the moment of purchase. It usually occurs in physical stores, shopping malls, and other onsite locations where you market and sell your product or service.

POS outdoor advertising signs come in traditional and digital forms. The traditional POS advertising displays include coupons, billboards to display product samples, in-store static signs, etc. Enterprises use digital LED displays, interactive displays that allow the audience to engage your ad content using sensors and touchscreens.

6. Street Furniture Advertising

Street advertising is broad, from large mounted video walls to small banners, outdoor advertising billboards, and posters on-street infrastructure, including bus stops, benches, streetlights, kiosks, shelters, trash cans, bike racks, etc. They are mostly popular for park outdoor advertising and other locations such as sidewalks and plazas. 

Street furniture advertising is one of the most effective and best outdoor advertising. It allows businesses to reach a wider audience in places where they actively engage with the environment. It is less expensive and always in places with high traffic. Therefore, your ad content will get a high engagement rate.

7. Wallscapes

Wallscapes are some of the largest advertising signs outdoors that are placed or painted on different exterior parts of a structure or wall. They usually cover considerably large building parts and are highly visible due to their massive size. Businesses use wallscapes for advertising because they are bold, highly effective, and last longer than other types of advertising, including printed banners and posters.

Digital Billboards

However, wallscapes may not be the best option for businesses on a tight budget because they are expensive to produce and require a certain level of expertise for effective installation. Aside from their cost, companies may also need to strictly consider their audience and follow laws and regulations guiding digital signage installation in certain areas. 

8. Digital Billboards Advertising

There hasn’t been an end to outdoor advertising signs’ evolution and technological advancements since their first production and installation in the 1450s. Since then, manufacturers have adjusted from the first posters in 1796 to the present-day digital signages, which led to the availability of digital billboards. 

Digital outdoor advertising involves the use of some traditional and modern electronic displays, including immersive LEDs screens, organic light-emitting diodes (OLEDs) displays, liquid crystal displays (LCDs), projector screens, and other creative outdoor advertising LED displays to promote products and services in large gatherings and public places.

The adoption of this type of advertising is becoming increasingly popular because of its electronic advantage that allows advertisers to change their ad content in real-time, its flexibility, high visibility, and higher reach compared to other traditional advertising forms. The connection between the audience and the brand also increases brand loyalty and customer engagement.

9. Guerrilla Advertising

If you are a startup or a business on a tight budget and need to create an unconventional but compelling ad campaign, guerrilla marketing is the best outdoor advertising for you. It often involves unexpected but effective tactics such as street art, public dancers, public stunts, etc., to create awareness and encourage the audience and passersby to refer the business to others. 

While it may sound simple, guerrilla advertising is only effective if your campaign is engaging enough to leave an unforgettable impression on the viewers. Once you get it right, the audience will joyfully share your campaign with their friends, family, and social media communities.  

10. Stadium Advertising

Regarding high-traffic platforms and locations that allow businesses to reach thousands and millions of audiences, stadia are one of those places. Stadium advertising is a prevailing and highly effective outdoor advertising venue that hundreds of companies have used and are currently using to communicate their brand values and promote their products or services.

Arenas and Stadiums

Some of the smallest stadiums have an average sitting capacity of over 100 spectators, while the largest can contain 150,000 people. So, depending on the size of the stadium and the outdoor advertising company you use, your ad campaign can reach over 10,000 engaged audiences in one day, leading to increased brand exposure, credibility, and a high return on investment.   

As much as stadium advertising is effective, it may not be suitable for small businesses and companies on a tight marketing budget because most of the display technologies used for this type of marketing are modern, expensive to produce and install, and also require a certain level of expertise for ad programming and publishing.

11. Aircraft Advertising

As the name implies, aircraft advertising involves leveraging detailed banners, posters, LED displays, and other types of traditional and digital signages to promote products and services on the exterior of an aircraft. The benefits of outdoor advertising leveraging aircraft are almost endless. It covers wide distances and offers visible display to large audiences, including various countries, regions, states, and demographics. 

Aircraft advertising is the best technique for interstate outdoor advertising. It has a slightly expensive upfront cost with cheap ongoing maintenance. Still, your investment will be worth it because you can use aircraft advertising to create a long-lasting impression on your audience since it instills a sense of excitement. 

12. 3D Advertising

Three-dimensional (3D) advertising is a modern-day advertising technique that uses life-like graphics, text, and images to create a deeper emotional connection between the brand or ad message and the audience by showcasing products, services and offers in an engaging and more immersive way. 

LED billboard (1)


As our world continues to lean toward new and exciting technological advancements, 3D outdoor advertising has become one of the best and most effective signs for creative outdoor advertising because it uses modern technology to add depth and feel to the ad content making it more appealing than traditional two-dimensional (2D) advertising. 

Ten Advantages and Six Disadvantages of Outdoor Advertising

Advantages of Outdoor Advertising Disadvantages of Outdoor Advertising
Audience Reach: Outdoor advertising has a wide audience reach since they are usually in high-traffic areas like stadia, transportation hubs, and streets.  Audiences may experience difficulty remembering business addresses or contact info since they are on the move.
Cost-effective: Aside from some outdoor advertising examples like stadium and aircraft marketing that require an expensive upfront cost, outdoor advertising is highly cost-effective than TV ads and other types of marketing. Limited Ad Message Time: Businesses may struggle to capture the audience’s attention since they are in motion.
Outdoor advertisements are highly visible Difficulty in Measuring Effectiveness: Another disadvantage of outdoor advertising is that it is difficult to measure ad effectiveness.
Creativity and Flexibility: Another benefit of outdoor advertising is allowing advertisers to create them in various designs, shapes, and sizes. Weather Conditions: Some outdoor advertising signs, including paper-printed posters and banners, are susceptible to severe weather conditions such as rain and sunlight.
Outdoor advertising also increases brand awareness. Vulnerable to vandalism.
Unlike ads that appear unexpectedly on Google and other social media platforms, outdoor advertisements are non-intrusive.
Longer advertising Periods: Depending on the outdoor advertising company and the ad board you use, outdoor media usually stays up for extended periods (months and years). 
Constant Exposure: Another  benefit of outdoor advertising is that it creates consistent brand or ad message exposure, making the audience remember it easily.
Influence Buying Decisions: Using convincing point-of-sale ad messages, retailers can cause impulsive buying and ultimately increase sales.
Increased Foot Traffic: Retail advertising and other outdoor advertising techniques can increase the number of people trooping into your store.


1. What Type of Outdoor Advertising is Best?

All outdoor advertising examples are effective. However, the best one for your business or event will depend on your advertising message, budget, industry, and audience. For instance, a hotel, holiday destination, or agency selling travel-related products or services will opt for aircraft advertising since their audience is tourists and travel lovers.

On the other hand, a betting platform, an alcoholic brand, a fintech company, or a business with a robust marketing budget and an audience between 18-40 may opt for stadium advertising since their audience is either football or concert lovers. Also, outdoor billboard advertising suits local businesses, real estate companies, car dealers, and travel companies.

2. Which Outdoor Advertising Is the Most Effective?

While many argue that billboard advertising is the most effective outdoor advertising, it is untrue. Outdoor billboard advertising and other types of out marketing are effective, including 3D and POS ads. Therefore the most effective outdoor advertising varies, depending on your target audience, location, ad message, and the expected results.

3. What Type of Board or Display Technology Is Best for Outdoor Advertising?

The best board or display technology perfect for your advertising needs will depend on your business, ad content, location, budget, and the results you want to achieve. Printed banners will do if you are creating awareness or directions to your store in a remote location. 

Also, if you are on a tight budget, wallscapes, and printed banners can help you achieve maximum results. On the flip side, if you want to reach thousands of people, 3D or large billboard advertising or stadium advertising is the best option because they are highly visible, hence their ability to reach a wider audience. 

Also, street furniture advertising, outdoor advertising mobile, and outdoor digital advertising displays reach a large audience and still make your ad more engaging and memorable.

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