We’ve had the pleasure of winning some highly coveted awards for digital billboard campaigns over recent years. Women’s Aid “Look at Me” was the first and went on to win a gold and silver at Cannes. We’ve won a bunch more for campaigns such at Churchill “Uninsured Drivers”, Born Free “Tank Free”, Sky Ocean Rescue and Churchie’s Drive Thru. Although the end result seems effortless, each and every one has taken a huge amount of time, passion, discovery and late nights. We’ve learnt a lot and we’ve also made a lot of mistakes. It’s all been valuable.

The good folk over at Campaign Magazine run a series of Creative Masterclasses aimed at shaking tips and tricks out of industry creatives so that others can learn from their insight (and mistakes). I had the honour of featuring in the latest instalment, dedicated to Digital Out Of Home features. Check out the video below.

As a bonus, scroll down below the video for 10 tips and ticks I tend to recommend to anyone looking to stand out when creating any kind of DOOH campaign.

10 tips for award winning DOOH

  1. Don’t Pitch if you can’t make it – Check if it’s practical, legal and if it’s really going to do what you want. This isn’t a case study video, this is reality.
  2. Talk to the media owner – they want case studies too. They know what works and what features would help you achieve your goal.
  3. Don’t over-use tech – smoke and mirrors is cheaper and can often work better. If it’s a short activation, it may not be efficient to spend 6 months building the tech. Likewise, if you’ve seen it on a website, you can probably do it in a digital billboard.
  4. Read the tech specs – then abuse them with respect, media buyers usually send you the basics as it makes their lives easier. Tech specs often have hidden gems.
  5. PR is essential – plan it meticulously, especially the launch day. Your billboard is often just the creative canvas for a wider PR/Social campaign.
  6. Location, location, location – Use the location to add extra relevance and context. Think why your audience may be there. Is there something close you could reference? Is the billboard a certain shape?
  7. Use tech carefully – Don’t creep people out. The media owners and landlords don’t want complaints either. This is a post GDPR world btw.
  8. Everyone loves a “worlds first” – especially the press and awards panels. But they are also wise to bullshit. Also, ask a seasoned OOH expert if it is actually new, chances are it’s been done before.
  9. Make interaction frictionless – make instructions blunt too. People don’t expect to interact with billboards so you can’t be subtle or ask them to download stuff / need apps.
  10. It’ll take longer and cost more than you think – Seriously. The 80/20 rule applies. Start developing early rather than in a nice “scheduled” development slot.
Dino Burbidge

About Dino Burbidge

I know enough about most things to be dangerous. Currently Director of Innovation and Technology at WCRS.

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