Outdoor has always been a fantastic medium to build brand stature. Countless campaigns have exploited this brilliantly over the years, right back to the days of the first white-out-of-red poster campaign for The Economist – conceived nearly 30 years ago, but still packing its punch emphatically and distinctively.
In the good old days of outdoor, it was about scale, single-mindedness and stature. The sheer creativity and discipline of synthesising an idea into no more than eight words and shouting it with conviction, literally from the rooftops. If you couldn’t express an idea on a poster, you didn’t have an idea. The brevity and clarity demanded by the medium guaranteed stature and the creative opportunities were grasped enthusiastically then, as now.
Posters were, by their nature, static, inflexible and uncompromising – and this added to their stature
and conviction. Great work was iconic work.
Stature today comes technology-enabled in out-of-home, opening up even bigger opportunities to be creative and innovative and to engage audiences at scale, or one-to-one. Who would have thought that posters could be a Walkers crisps vending machine, an augmented-reality flying saucer for Pepsi Max, a braille billboard for Maltesers?
The creative possibilities are as boundaryless as the technology that fuels them. Special-build billboards can bring solar energy to remote African schools, dramatise car fuel produced from the byproduct of brewing beer, provoke a debate about the right to die, and more. The medium is dynamic, interactive and sophisticated, and that’s where the stature of the medium resides today.
With all these tools at our disposal , the opportunities for creative innovation in outdoor are endless. Add
this to the inbuilt stature and very public nature of the medium and the sky is, literally, the limit. I can’t wait
to get reviewing and judging all the entries.
Cilla Snowball is the group chairman and group chief executive of Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO.
As a judge in the Campaign and Clear Channel Outdoor Planning Awards 2017, she will be looking for..."scale work which engages truly innovatively".