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5 min read

6 Boldest Out Of Home Advertising Campaigns Ever

Written by
Pavlo Fedykovych
Published on
January 31, 2024
May 29, 2024

1. Jack Ryan S2 gigantic billboard - Amazon

Why: Amazon put a lot of effort into promoting its streaming show child Jack Ryan starring John Krasinski. For season 2 the company went super bold by using a Los Angeles rooftop to create one of the world’s largest billboards ever. Now that’s epic. And while you may ask, why would the company want to place it this way, how people are going to look at it? 

Well, the location wasn’t random. The installation was situated near LAX so that the flyers going in and out of the city could see the promotional billboard in all of its OOH glory. Also, the letters were illuminated at night to secure the gazes of crowds landing and taking off when the sun was down.

2. Ford EcoSport Billboard

Credit: Ford

Why: look, there are bold billboards out there. But none of them can compare in the boldness of this OOH campaign by Ford in Spain. Not only it’s a gargantuan piece of advertising, it was officially included in the Guinness World Record as the world’s largest billboard. Now that’s how you do big.

Stats are over-the-top here with 2,000 kg in weight, 5,265 m2 in size (it’s 20 tennis courts everybody), and the whole entirety of Madrid’s well-known Edificio España skyscraper. The message reads “Life is out there, are you?” and promotes the Ford Performance-inspired EcoSport ST-Line model.

3. Emirates Intellectual Property Association - EIPA billboard

out-of-home advertising campaigns EIPA
Credit: EIPA

Why: striving to break records should be appreciated. That’s the case of this huge, 6,260 m² billboard in Dubai. Frankly speaking, it’s far from the boldest in terms of creativity. The installation features logos of various companies that are represented in UAE and is ordered by the Emirates Intellectual Property Association as a reminder of the importance of intellectual property rights protection. Still, it has its place in the history of advertising as the biggest billboard in the world. The structure is recognized by the Guinness World Records for that.

4. Follow the Arches - McDonald’s 

Why: you can easily call it one of the most impressive OOH campaigns ever and you won’t be judged in any way. McDonald’s showed a masterclass in advertising in 2018 with their bold Follow the Arches campaign. It turns out that the recipe for success in outdoor is reducing the visual clutter, focusing on the uniqueness of your brand, and applying a memorable design to make the point. Here we have a very simple idea that works perfectly for its purpose. 

McDonald’s decided to unify its signage that directs drivers to the nearest McDonald’s. The way they did it was by using the instantly recognizable yellow arches from their logo as a sort of wayfinding symbol. It turned out that the “M” letter can show directions. And that’s where this campaign went genius. cossette, the agency behind the campaign used the various arches from the logo to direct drivers to the nearest McDonald’s by putting them on roadside billboards in a minimalist fashion alongside the simple wayfinding text.

That’s definitely one of the best out-of-home advertising campaigns ever that’s bold in its smartness.

5. Who Is The King - Burger King

Why: who doesn’t love a good beef between brands? Burger King and McDonald’s have been doing this forever. But with the “Who Is The King” stunt Burger King has raised the stakes of the battle with the help of a well-thought response. It wasn’t technically OOH but it featured OOH in the very beginning. But let’s get some background here. 

So, the year was 2016 and McDonald’s started first. The fast-food chain erected two billboards on a French road. One was saying that the next McDonald’s was just 5 kilometers away. The other featured a long list of directions to reach the nearest Burger King restaurant which was 258 kilometers away. Ok, so far so good, McDonald’s made its shot emphasizing the fact that it operates many more restaurants than Burger King does.

But the rival didn’t wait long to respond. Burger King only needed 3 days to post a tweet and a video showing the couple from the McDonald’s video going to McDonald’s to get a coffee… because of the long way that awaits them ahead to reach the Burger King restaurant and have their favorite Whopper. Now that’s bold. And very well-played.

6. Clever Dracula shadow billboards - BBC

Why: YouTube comments under the video of the transforming Dracula billboard say it all. “Bloody fantastic,” says one. “Ultra smart,” notes another. To promote their new show, BBC chose quite an unconventional approach and produced one of the most memorable OOH advertising campaigns ever. Two billboards were created, one on Brixton Road in South London and another on Upper Dean Street in Birmingham. 

The advertising magic happens when the sun goes down and the shadows from wooden stakes that are “plunged” into the billboard’s surface form a menacing shadow of Dracula’s vampire face. That’s exactly what the “wow” effect is. Also, it’s a highly creative OOH endeavor that deserves applause and recognition.

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