I enjoy my job. I enjoy creating ads. I even enjoy being a consumer of ads (the good ones). However, not all forms of advertising contribute to the upswing of our culture.
Driving around town these days we get to enjoy outdoor ads on “the big screen.” Yes, children, the FUTURE IS NOW. There are a handful of digital outdoor boards that currently dot the freeways of M’waukee. To be exact, there are 10 boards available in the Milwaukee area (six of which must be bought as a network), and advertising sales folks are gunning for expansion.
You can’t miss ‘em. These “Vegas-style” ads glow brightly enough for the good people of Michigan to read them. I don’t mind so much the tasteful designs or clever headlines, but they seem to be in the minority. Most of the time it’s too-large type fortified with gaudy, discount-store colors. Why, people? No need to be so loud with your message. It’s already 48 feet wide and ablaze with light.
Yelling at someone who doesn’t speak your language does not make it easier for them to understand you.
Plus, the messages on these digital manifestations of attention-deficit-disorder change every 60 seconds. I’ve heard ugly rumors that some ad pros are lobbying for a six-second rotation. I’m not sure how much pummeling my senses can take. Or how many fender-benders my 4-Runner can take.
With the advent of these super-sized plasmas comes more responsibility: more taste. Let’s not suck the art out of our lives with bad advertising. Let’s wield this new weapon sweetly. Otherwise, I vote we all pull over during drive-time and pop a DVD up on one of those muthas. Anyone up for a little 48-foot wide “Grindhouse”?
Yes, I do work in advertising. My point was not that outdoor is obnoxious, or that these new boards are. My entire point was that more responsibilty and more thought to decent design should be employed with a medium that grabs so much attention and ultimately is a high profile part our city. The point of outdoor is also not to be bigger or bolder neccessarily. Some wonderful outdoor exists that isn't so much bold as it is appropiate for the message or brand. Being obnoxious does not a great outdoor board make.
I love this medium and find it a great opportunity as a creative. I have used outdoor quite a lot, and only a few have been obnoxious or bold - some have been downright subtle. It comes down to brand and audience.
"Let's wield this new weapon sweetly" I said. Good design matters in our society, and this new technology demands it.
i want movie billboards.
really, i get jealous when i drive through I-294 around the Loop and see gigantic 48' wide ads for movies...put some of those up on these digital boards!
Grindhouse? Fool, you must be crazy. I rather look at a blank screen, static and snow, or a LifeCall commercial with that old bitty who fell down and couldn't get up than that waste of film. Grindhouse? Please.
If you work at an ad agency, as I do, you know that the goal of advertising is, ultimately, to attract the attention of the consumer and get them to do something. With outdoor advertising, bigger and bolder is the rule in attracting attention. While you may find these digital boards obnoxious the fact is that they are engaging. I find many TV, radio, and print ads obnoxious but you dont blast themmaybe its because you can effectively eliminate those type of ads whereas outdoor its a little more difficult?
Whoa there, Sister. I'm well aware of the national average and that full motion is illegal. What you must realize is that this is just my little, homemade blog and I find the thought of boards flashing every 6 seconds a bit obnoxious. These musings from my armchair shouldn't be taken as such a threat. Everything is going to be ok. Peace and love, my friend. - Michael
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