Billboards are a form of advertising that we see every day. This is a popular way to advertise your brand, services, products, and events. We have all seen effective billboards that catch our attention and do what they were intended for. But we have also all seen billboards that were not effective and easily forgettable. While it is simple to pick out the good billboards from the bad, it may be difficult to design a good billboard of your own.

If you decide to invest in billboard advertising, there are a few things you need to know and consider before you finalize your billboard. At Portboards, we are billboard experts who want to help make your billboard advertising as effective as possible. In this blog, we are going to talk about things you should know about billboard advertising and how to make yours as beneficial to your company as possible.

Types of Outdoor Advertising

Billboards are just one type of outdoor advertising and they account for 17 percent of the 2 million outdoor advertising displays. Some of the other types include point of sale displays, street furniture (bus shelters, telephone booths, and kiosks), transit advertising and wraps, and guerrilla advertising. While billboards may only take up 17 percent of the outdoor advertising displays, they are probably the most noticed and relevant. Whether you drive your own car, ride a bus to work, take the light rail, or ride a bike, you will be exposed to billboards. Whereas, transit advertising, street furniture, and point of sale displays are not seen by nearly as many people. This makes billboards a very effective form of outdoor advertising compared to others.

Time Away From Home

If you are thinking about whether or not you should invest in a billboard as part of your campaign, consider this: Americans spend an average of 17,600 minutes in their cars every year. That is nearly 300 hours a year. This means that billboards get a lot of exposure from drivers alone. But does this mean they are actually paying attention to billboard advertisements?

People Notice Billboards

There are a lot of statistics about how many billboards that are noticed by drivers and how effective that can actually be. According to Arbitron National In-Car Study, 71 percent of drivers pay attention to billboards on the side of the road. This means that billboards are getting a lot of looks and having a positive effect as long as your design is eye-catching. About 37 percent of drivers also reported looking at outdoor ads every time they drive past one. This study also mentions that these drivers are actually taking in the information on billboards. The drivers who saw the billboards were able to recall seeing information on these billboards that mattered to them, whether it was event or show information, a store or restaurant they wanted to visit, or something funny. In fact, 56 percent of people talk about funny billboards that they see with friends and family. So, making your billboard funny is a great way to start with billboard advertising!

Design Matters

The most important part of your billboard is the design. Even if you are not in a prime location, your billboard will not be effective if the design is poor. There are several elements that need to go into your design, which we have covered in a previous blog, but making sure that you keep some things in mind while designing your billboard is important. We wanted to go over some of these design elements and what to think about as you create your billboard. Remember that people will be seeing your billboard quickly as they drive by. A good way to test to see if your billboard will be readable and the design will look good is to print the design on a business card and hold it away at an arm’s length. If it looks good, then your billboard should look good as well!

Short and Sweet

Most people who are seeing your billboard are seeing it from about 500 feet away and only for a few seconds. This means your message needs to be quick and effective. Keep the wording minimal and make your message clear. It is best to keep it to six words.


Choose a font that is as easy to read as possible. Something bold, blocky, and simple. This will help people actually read the words on your billboard rather than spend time trying to figure out what it says.


Driving can get boring and dull, especially when stuck in traffic. Making your billboard entertaining can help it stand out more. You will want to make it creative and spark drivers’ imagination. We have all seen creative billboards that make us think and are unique, those are the ones people remember.


While you want to catch the attention of drivers, you don’t want your billboard to be too busy or too over the top. Something that catches attention but isn’t extremely distracting is the perfect middle ground.


You also want to make a billboard that is memorable. Whether your images speak to people, you make your billboard funny, or you go for a different angle, you want to make sure it is something that will stick in their minds.

Contact Information

While it is easy to create the perfect billboard, one thing you do not want to forget to add is your contact information or something that allows viewers to learn more. Add your URL, email, location, or number to the billboard to make it more effective.


Making your billboard unique is obviously a great choice when it comes to effectiveness. While it is simple to make a billboard unique to your company, you want it to be unique to all other billboards. While yours may have your branding and style on it that no other billboard has, you can make yours stand out even more. Most billboards are the typical rectangle shape, but you can make yours unique by adding 3D features, cutouts, using the surroundings, or making certain elements pop!

If you are looking for a unique billboard, Portaboards can help! We carry mobile billboard products that are eye-catching, unique, and easy to use to your advantage. From moving them to popular locations around town to driving them during rush hour, you can easily catch people’s attention with our mobile billboards.

When you choose to add billboards to your advertising campaign, it is a good idea to keep all of these things in mind. And if you want to take your billboard design to the next level, add it to one of our portable billboards! Start shopping now and make your billboard effective. Contact us with any questions you may have.