Posted by: Posterscope SA | March 30, 2010

Billboard Wars

We all know that outdoor advertising is a fantastic way to reach your target market, but some have added to this opportunity.  There are brands out there that take out of home advertising a step further by using wit and clever creative to let their competitors know that they are out there and up for the challenge.

Audi and BMW are two brands that illustrate the so-called billboard wars.  On the corner of Santa Monica Boulevard and Beverly Glen Boulevard, California, Audi put up some billboards showing the all new Audi A4 along with the headline:  “Your move, BMW”.  Santa Monica BMW, a local dealership, took on the challenge and entered a virtual chess game….of course, with cars rather than pawns, kings or queens.  In addition, BMW’s advertising agency initiated a tactical outdoor marketing campaign in response to Audi’s current billboards challenge.  The creative work features the BMW M3 with the headline “Checkmate” and is positioned prominently within the same sightline to westbound traffic as the Audi ad.

International companies are not the only ones brave enough to challenge their competitors in the public eye.  In South Africa we had our own billboard war – between Teazers and The Grand.  All you had to do was drive down Rivonia Road and you would be welcomed by the droll comments.  The Grand chose to place a billboard in the area surrounding The Grand and Teazers saying “Welcome to The Grand territory”.  Teazers boldly responded by placing a billboard in the same area saying “Some need to mark their territory.  Teazers are nationwide!”  What a comeback.  These were followed by other phrases, such as “We lead others follow! The Grand, Grander, Grandest Revue Bar!” and “At Teazers our Girl’s don’t lounge around”

Wouldn’t it be great if more brands would challenge each other so courageously – it would certainly make my morning commute more entertaining.

– Kiron Smit (OOH Planner – JHB)


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