I know what you’re thinking – Billboards are so 1968, why on earth are you writing a blog about billboards?
Because I’m a mom. I’m a mom to a 3-year-old boy who hasn’t even begun to participate in sports and other activities that will eventually dominate my life and keep my car on the road for hours at a time on Saturday mornings.
And I’m a mom who has realized her time is not her own. That the few minutes I spend in my car alone are oftentimes the only minutes I spend alone during the day thinking about what I want to think about. And therefore, those priceless minutes are some of the few times an advertiser can actually get to me when my brain isn’t moving in a thousand different directions.
Sure there are other things I’m thinking about in the car – driving, things I need to do when I get home, what I’m going to fix for dinner. Sometimes I’m listening to the radio and intent on a story I’m hearing. But many times I turn the radio down just to get a little peace and quiet…
I’ve also been trying very hard not to be dominated by my phone while driving these days. Sometimes I fail, but it’s something I’m really convicted about. And let’s face it, many times I pick up the phone because I’m just bored and don’t want to be alone with myself.
But since I’m being honest, the real reason billboards work for me, is I like them. They keep me entertained on the road. There are some really creative ones, and I love to see what the campaign will come up with next (I’m talking about some ninja cows that I just saw on I-85 South heading into Atlanta yesterday!). I notice billboards more than any other advertising. And I recollect billboards more than other advertising.
There are television commercials that I love – that make me laugh – yet, I can’t tell you who the client is or really what they’re advertising (until the fifth or sixth iteration of “mayhem”). Radio commercials too. But I’m such a visual person that the connection I make between a billboard and its six or seven words written in gazillion point type and a brand – that sticks!
Maybe I’m an anomaly, but maybe I’m just a busy mom. Maybe seeing is believing for us busy people. Maybe the call of a few words, a nice visual, and a two-dimensional shape just calls to our need for some stillness in our lives. Maybe it’s so different from being by Twitter, Facebook and Pinterest every few seconds that we can actually focus on it. Whatever is it, whatever your belief, I’d still have some billboards in my advertising plans for moms!
Some of the billboards designed by MVC include: