Top 8 creative billboard advertising ideas with examples

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Billboard advertisements date back to the 1830s. These were best described as oversized posters on buildings that face the roads. The medium has evolved since then. Today, Out-of-home advertising has turned digital. Some billboard ads respond to movement while others are integrated with Artificial Intelligence.

What is billboard advertising

Billboard ads are a great way to capture a person’s attention while they’re outdoors. They’re big, bold and beautiful. These ads are visible through the day and night and remain so for the entire duration of the campaign.

Introducing the Smart Billboard

The world of billboard advertising has been revolutionized by digital technology. The first digital billboards were installed in 2001. The display wasn’t completely digital and had a low-resolution compared to today’s screen. But, back in the day, this was groundbreaking. Since then, a lot has changed.

Smart billboards have evolved to a place where they combine the billboard design and big data analytics. Some billboards use information from smartphone tracking to adjust the ads. The world’s first interactive billboard was launched by Porsche in January 2015.

Advertisers have found that digital billboards have a high recall rate and offer a much higher ROI as compared to traditional billboards.

Top 8 Creative Digital Billboards

Outdoor advertising has moved beyond static display and extended to interactive experiences that offer better customer audiences. The top 8 outdoor advertising ideas amongst them are:-

1.The Economist

A billboard by the Economist is a fine example of a simple billboard with artificial intelligence. At first glance, the billboard is simple- a 3-dimensional bulb set against a red background. But, when a person walks by, the billboard ‘lights up’. Quite literally, the bulb lights up when a person walks under it.

Advertising Agency: Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, UK

2.Reebok ZPump2.0

When Reebok launched the ZPump 2.0, they brought out an interesting billboard to drum up publicity. They installed an outdoor billboard with a speed camera. It used motion detection and realtime object recognition to identify people running past it and calculate their speed. People who ran past the billboard at a speed higher than 17km/hr unlocked a free new pair of shoes.

3.British Airways

British Airways brought out a billboard ad that used data from surveillance technology for tracking flights to grab attention. When a British Airways flight flew overhead, the image of a child walked across the screen pointing towards the flight. The flight number and destination were also displayed on the screen. The billboard used technology to channel an audience’s excitement and make the advertisement look like magic!

4.Coca Cola

The Coca Cola ad is based on the viewer’s emotions instead of his/ her browsing history. This billboard was an attempt by the brand to connect with their audience. The billboard uses facial recognition. When a person comes towards the billboard the face on it smiles and winks.


As part of its Wonder-filled campaign, Oreo took over the largest advertising space in Times Square and published not 1 but 12 billboards. The billboards displayed Oreos being shared across mediums and created a visual tapestry that extended across buildings.


Apotek created a responsive billboard designed to fight against smoking. The advertisement was activated every time a smoker walked past. The smoke detectors in the billboard were activated and triggered the video of a man coughing followed by an anti-smoking message and an advertisement for products that can help with nicotine addiction.

7.GMC Arcadia

This digital outdoor advertising used facial recognition cameras that could identify people by gender, age and expression. This data allowed the billboard to respond dynamically. For example, when a woman walked by, a video with the phrase, “Hello my lady” would play on the screen. The screen could also be used to play interactive games with the onlooker.


Pepsi took advertising up a notch with augmented reality. The brand used technology to transform bus shelter walls into fake windows. As a bus made its way to the bus stop, the window would show attacking robots, flying saucers and many other unlikely objects.

In Conclusion

Billboards are constantly evolving to keep pace with technology. These billboards are a great way for you to reach out to your target audience. In the future, billboards-both big and small will incorporate artificial intelligence and use augmented reality to engage with customers. If you want to stay ahead of the game and make an impact with your audience, this is the space you should be in.

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