A Guide to Billboard Advertising for Community Theatres

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The cost of UK billboard advertising is often perceived to be an expensive medium to invest in, and only available to brands with large advertising budgets. However, this is a common myth that can actively diminish the marketing potential of your brand.
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In the bustling world of community theatre, captivating the local audience’s attention can often feel like a performance in itself. 

With a myriad of marketing channels vying for consumer attention, standing out from the crowd is more essential than ever. 

Enter the timeless power of billboard advertising. 

Why Billboards: The Benefits for Community Theatres

When it comes to visibility, nothing quite matches the impact of a strategically located billboard.

As a community theatre, your goal is to reach a local audience and billboards help you do just that.

Billboards also offer the benefit of continuous exposure. 

Unlike a TV or radio advert that appears intermittently, your billboard is always on display, providing constant reminders of upcoming performances. 

Plus, billboards are a hard-to-ignore medium. 

Creating an Impact: Tips for Effective Theatre Billboard Design

Designing an effective billboard is an art in itself. 

The first rule of thumb is to keep it simple. Remember, most viewers will only have a few seconds to process your message as they drive or walk by. 

Use bold, clear images, a limited colour palette, and easy-to-read fonts. Moreover, evoke the spirit of the play or performance you’re promoting.

For instance, if it’s a suspenseful drama, consider darker, mysterious designs; if it’s a comedy, brighter colours and a light-hearted tone may be more suitable.

Then, it’s all about your call to action (CTA). You want to compel people to book their tickets right away. 

Highlight the unique selling points of your performance – perhaps it’s an exclusive show, a well-known actor, or rave reviews. 

Location, Location, Location: Choosing the Right Spots for Your Billboards

When deciding on billboard locations, it’s important to think about where your potential theatregoers spend their time. 

High-traffic areas are obviously a priority, but consider, too, the demographics of the areas in question.

For instance, placing your billboard near universities or colleges can be a great strategy if you’re running a modern, avant-garde play likely to appeal to younger audiences.

Moreover, consider the visibility and size of the billboard itself. 

Billboards positioned near traffic lights or in areas where traffic often slows down, are generally more effective, as they give drivers more time to absorb your message. 

But remember, even the best billboard won’t be effective if it isn’t located where your potential audience can see it. It’s all about finding the right location to maximise your theatre’s visibility.

Timing is Everything: Coordinating Your Billboard Campaign with Event Schedules

The timing of your billboard campaign is key in drumming up anticipation and ensuring your theatre performances are fresh in the minds of potential attendees. 

Consider putting up your billboards a few weeks (if not months) in advance of your show’s opening night to build momentum.

This timing allows for word-of-mouth marketing to supplement your billboard advertising, leading to a potential increase in ticket sales.

Another timing strategy to consider is coordinating with local events or holidays.

For example, if your theatre is putting on a Christmas-themed performance, it might be worth aligning your billboard advertising with the beginning of the festive season. 

Beyond Traditional Billboards: Exploring Digital and Interactive Options

As technology evolves, so too do the opportunities for innovative billboard advertising. 

Digital billboards allow you to change your message in real time and display multiple messages in a single slot, for example.

For example, you could showcase different cast members or highlights from your performance at different times of the day. 

In a similar vein, interactive billboards can engage passersby in a more direct way. 

Perhaps it’s a billboard that invites people to interact via their smartphones, or one that changes its message based on the time of day. 

The key is to get creative and capture attention in unique ways.

Maximising ROI: Cost-effective Strategies for Theatre Billboard Advertising

While billboards can be a highly effective advertising tool, it’s crucial to ensure your campaign delivers a good return on investment (ROI). 

One strategy to help maximise your ROI is to book a longer lease term for your billboard space, which can often result in a lower overall monthly cost.

Additionally, making the most of your billboard design can also enhance ROI. A compelling design with a clear message is more likely to resonate with viewers and lead to ticket purchases. 

Finally, pairing your billboard campaign with social media advertising can create a multi-channel marketing strategy that broadens your reach and enhances overall impact.

Making It Work: A Step-by-Step Guide for Your Theatre’s Billboard Campaign

Step one in planning your theatre’s billboard campaign involves developing a clear understanding of your target audience. 

Who are they? What are their interests and habits? This information is key to crafting a message that resonates and selecting the right locations for your billboards.

Next, design a billboard that captures attention and communicates your message effectively. 

Keep it simple, with a compelling call-to-action and visuals that represent your performance. Collaborate with graphic designers, and don’t hesitate to seek professional advice if needed. 

Once your design is ready, coordinate with your billboard operator to schedule the launch of your campaign. 

Align this with your theatre’s event schedule and consider local events or holidays that could augment the impact of your campaign.

Don’t forget to consider digital billboard in terms of your chosen medium as they can significantly increase engagement and give you more flexibility in terms of timing and content changes.

Finally, make sure you’re measuring the effectiveness of your campaign. 

Look at ticket sales before and after the launch of your campaign and collect audience feedback where possible. 

This data is invaluable for refining future campaigns and ensuring you’re getting the best return on your investment.

The Last Word

Billboards offer an impactful and cost-effective advertising option for community theatres, whether you’re looking to boost awareness, increase ticket sales, or engage more closely with your local community. 

From understanding your audience and designing compelling visuals, to strategic location choice and timing your campaign effectively, each step plays a crucial role in the success of your billboard advertising strategy.

No matter the nature of your production, a well-planned and well-executed billboard campaign can help your community theatre take centre stage. 

As a theatre, partnering with a trusted billboard operator like 75Media can greatly simplify this process. 

So why wait? Start planning your billboard strategy today and let your local community know that the show is indeed ready to go on.

Book your billboard today.
Book your billboard today.

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