Sales & Marketing

Understanding the Cost of Billboard Advertising

Understanding the Cost of Billboard Advertising
Photo: Canva

Billboard advertising is a great way to expand your media reach from social and digital media to a more public, generalized view. It can be a fantastic tool for reaching those on a daily commute, accessing people using public transportation, or even finding those who are walking around—whether to work or simply enjoying a weekend.

With a number of different options for billboard advertising, it may pose an excellent way to better your business, reach a group you would not otherwise reach, or push your brand into the next phase of growth. However, understanding the prices of, and the different forms of billboard advertising to take advantage of this next year can be a difficult task.

Here are a few notes to help with understanding the costs of billboard advertising.

1. Location-Based Pricing

One of the first pricing factors for billboards has to do with where you choose to place your billboard or billboards. There are typically a number of different locations in any given city, or amongst any highway. These locations will typically cost more or less based on where they are located, and how much traffic they receive.

This leads to an important question regarding the return on investment for billboards. It is important to analyze whether or not the cost of location grants pays off in regard to new consumers. Understanding this relationship will be crucial to your success.

Additionally, some locations may have different-sized posters, which can also affect pricing.

2. Size Matters

This leads us to the relationship between size and billboard pricing. Especially when it comes to print billboards, the size of your billboard may increase the pricing. Billboard sizes also typically go hand-in-hand with billboard locations. For instance, a billboard over a large highway will likely be much larger than a billboard located on the side of a building, or deeper in the city.

Furthermore, if you are paying to have your billboard printed, depending on the color needs and materials, as well as installation, you may end up paying more in production costs.

While this may encourage you to use smaller billboards due to savings, larger billboards are far more visible to most day-to-day computers and provide you with a greater amount of opportunities to stand out. Additionally, larger billboards are typically located in denser areas with more traffic, which may mean that you reach a grander audience.

3. Price Per City

Billboards are going to have different costs depending on what city you are in. For instance, Philadelphia billboards may cost less than Los Angeles billboards. This is largely related to population, demand for billboard advertising, and who rents out billboards in your specific city.

Billboards may also be more or less effective depending on your city, and thus should be researched carefully to analyze your return on investment, and whether or not it is a worthwhile investment for your business.

4. Digital Billboards vs Print Billboards

While print billboards may be the classic, digital billboards supply an excellent opportunity for growing businesses, and exciting designs. Digital billboards allow the use of animation, moving backgrounds, live text, and even video. They are typically very easily used to catch the eyes of viewers and can be easily changed, as rather than having to put up an entirely new canvas, the media file can simply be changed.

All of these benefits, however, do come at a cost. Most digital billboards cost slightly more than most print billboards. While this price difference may discourage the use of digital billboards, they offer a far wider variety of options, and allow more experimentation, as digital billboards can be easily changed, or used in different locations over the course of your advertising campaign.

Should You Consider Billboard Advertising in 2023?

Billboard advertising is a great opportunity for those trying to expand their marketing campaign out of the exclusive social media and web marketing venues into those of a more broad, public nature. This type of stretch can be highly effective, especially for local businesses, or for those with products that appeal to a wide range of people.

If you are trying to analyze the cost of billboard advertising to determine whether or not it is a good fit, do local research. Understand what the costs are of different billboards in your area, who you are trying to reach, and where you are trying to reach them.

Consider running a billboard campaign for a few months in your region, then carefully analyzing whether or not it had a positive ROI. If you are successful, keep doing what you are doing. If you need to reevaluate, you can always try another strategy, or end your campaign.

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