Guides & Resouces

The 4 most common out-of-home mistakes and how to avoid them

We explored what makes an effective outdoor advert in our previous post “3 simple steps to design outdoor ads with impact”.

With that in mind, we thought we’d share the most common mistakes we see in outdoor advertising, so you’re armed with the knowledge to get better results and make your money go further.

1. Messaging overload

Perhaps the most common mistake we see is cluttered adverts, with text, images, and information all competing for attention. Remember, a large advert is not an invitation to add more content about your business.

You only have seconds to get your message across. When you try to say too much, you risk saying nothing at all.

Solution: The antidote to this problem is simplicity. Stick to the key elements that your audience needs to know; a striking headline, your brand name, a memorable URL, and a compelling call to action – these are the cornerstones of effective ads.

2. Lack of situational awareness

This happens when the designer doesn’t consider where the advert will be. If your ad, like many roadside ads, will be in a field of green or against an organic backdrop, you should probably avoid natural tones – your ad may fade into the background.

Solution: consider which (on-brand) colours you can use to create the most contrast with the environment. Black and white are tried-and-true options, offering stark contrast, but don’t shy away from incorporating strategic flashes of bold colour to ensure your ad stands out.

3. Neglecting creativity

For whatever reason, many brands fall into the trap of being too sensible and serious for fear that any negative reaction will permanently hurt their brand. But here’s the truth – you can’t bore people into buying your product. 

Outdoor advertising is your chance to entertain, engage, and evoke emotional responses in your audience. That is how they will remember you.

Solution: Dare to be different and take a creative risk to make your campaign more distinctive. Introduce a mascot, make a relatable joke, or infuse lighthearted humour into stereotypically boring topics. Your audience will love you for it.

4. Failing to measure results

If you wait until the end of your campaign to figure out whether it’s had an impact, that’s a mistake. The simplest way to measure ROI for roadside advertising is by monitoring traffic, sales, or leads before your campaign goes live.


  • Understand your numbers – get a baseline on: –
  • Existing Traffic to your website
  • Search term rankings – how many people search for your company name/ URL
  • Natural SEO Ranking – if a potential customer searches by your company name where do you appear
  • Survey visitors to your website and ask how they discovered your brand. This will help you build a picture of which channels are working best.

Remember, outdoor advertising is a dynamic and impactful medium. The key to success lies in a combination of creativity, strategy, and adaptability.

Of course, the easiest way to avoid these mistakes is to partner with us.

Our hassle-free fees include everything from expert guidance to artwork design and print, so your campaign shines in the right place at the right time – no experience necessary. 

24th October, 2023
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