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Simplicity + brute force + longevity = great marketing?

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GREGG
BLANCHARD
       

If you’ve ever driven the I-15 corridor through Utah County (20-30 miles south of Salt Lake) you may remember seeing billboards like this one.

https://twitter.com/marikokoloco/status/715743039264657410

Now, notice I said “remember seeing” not just “seen” because even though there are hundreds of billboards along this stretch of interstate, I can name 3+ unique campaigns they’re run over the years.

And I can because they follow a really savvy recipe.

Ingredient #1: Keep it Simple
Each of these billboards has a simple, to-the-point phrase, the DOMO logo, and nothing more. Sometimes it’s nothing more than images or shapes.

Ingredient #2: Repetition
I’ll use their latest campaign for this next example. Keep in mind that I was driving (not starting at billboards) and was on backroads for about 1/3 of my travels through the area, and I still saw FOUR of these billboards.

So, a simple message repeated over and over. This alone is enough, but there’s one more piece.

Ingredient #3: Longevity
Take this campaign from 5+ years ago, for example.

There are two lessons here. The first is that they’ve been using these billboards for a long time, but also notice what Josh James (DOMO’s CEO) says in his tweet. They actually have a “billboard idea board” that anyone (Mike Laws, as far as I can tell, was an Account Manager) can contribute to.

In other words, it’s not just a one-off “let’s add a billboard to our marketing mix” type thing, it’s something they really put time and effort into making the most of.

Enter Snowbird
Talk about perfect timing, I was sitting down to finish up this post when I saw this tweet from Snowbird’s Dave Amirault.

Notice (or keep in mind) three things:

  1. The simplicity of the message (and the way they’ve piggybacked on another campaign the market may have already seen)
  2. The repetition of the message (this is going up on 60 different billboards)
  3. The longevity of the message (Snowbird also has long-used billboards, some of which in the exact same place for as long as I can remember)

As far as I can tell, this is the way to do billboards. Not one all-in-one message for a half a season, but a bunch of bite-sized pieces plastered everywhere for a long time.

Not Just DOMO and The Bird
Billboards are a funny thing. I drive by hundreds on any given roadtrip, but the only ones I remember are the ones that combine simplicity, repetition, and longevity. Like the Little America billboards along I-80 or the F.M Light & Sons mini-billboards leading into Steamboat that follow this exact pattern.

Maybe you can succeed with Billboards with just a single, well-planned execution. But maybe, just maybe, you’ve gotta add a little brute force to that plan to make it work.



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