The Art Of The Billboard

Do They Really Work?


Thanks to the internet, deep behavior analysis has become a mandatory factor in spending your ad budget. Traditionally, print, TV and billboard advertising has lacked this critical feedback loop. How can we reliably measure their effectiveness?

Ken Foster, president of Foster Research thinks so. In an attempt to answer that question, Regan National Advertising teamed up with Foster Research to show how far-reaching billboard advertising actually is.

Are You Smarter Than A Fifth Grader?

Running a simple survey they asked the question: “What was the first word spoken on the moon?”

As you’d imagine, the number one answer was the iconic Neil Armstrong phrase: That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind.”

That answer, is in fact, wrong.

Can you answer that question correctly? Try asking a few friends. Seriously.

The first words uttered when Apollo 11 famously touched down on the surface of the moon, were: Houston, we have landed.”

The Results Are In, You Aren’t

Interestingly, only 1.3% of randomly surveyed residents were able to correctly answer the question.

Later, Foster ran a series of billboards asking the same question, but with the correct answer.


Billboards Can Go Viral?

Foster says, “word seems to spread quickly, and the percentage of people who can remember the factoid being advertised skyrockets after the first 30 days.”

In a random survey after the campaign the number of correct answers went from 1 percent or less, to over 45 percent correctly answered.

Read more about this clever experiment that helped add tangible metrics to an advertising medium with a traditionally fuzzy ROI.

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