In the age of digital technology, one would think that smartphone brands would focus greatly on mobile advertising. In reality, Out-of-Home (OOH) advertising is still a popular means for smartphone brands to reach consumers. And as smart as the phones these brands have, their OOH campaigns are just as smart.
In 2018, Huawei won a Guinness World Record for their 5,673-square-meter billboard at Plaza De España in Madrid, Spain. It was awarded as the world’s largest outdoor billboard. The static billboard creatively advertised Huawei’s P20 Pro and entitled it “The Future has come.” The billboard was a collaboration of modern technology and the Renaissance era with the use of Huawei’s P20 Pro. Huawei has been known to place billboard advertisements in various historical locations in Europe to get the attention of consumers. Besides placing a billboard at Madrid, they also placed billboards in other European cities such as Rome and Prague. Through this outdoor advertising campaign, we see how Huawei makes use of static billboards for its flexibility in creativity, material, and size.
Samsung isn’t far behind Huawei with their own innovations in smartphones and out-of-home advertising campaigns. Earlier this year, Samsung unveiled teasers for their “Galaxy Unpacked” event through digital OOH media in various iconic landmarks worldwide. The campaign showed Korea’s Hangul letters in bold that translates to “The future unfolds.” This was a tease to Samsung Galaxy’s new lineup of phones and their visions of innovation for the future of smartphones. The digital billboards were released in February 2019 at New York City’s Times Square, Singapore’s The Heeren, Madrid’s Callao Square, and other famous landmarks around the globe. Amongst smartphone brands, Samsung gives a big focus on digital billboards. The brand tends to buy over and dominate the whole screen with their advertisements to ensure visibility and attention from consumers. Making use of digital billboards allows Samsung to create moving advertisements that will get the attention of consumers. With their campaign’s focus on innovation for the future of smartphones, it is quite fitting for them to use digital billboards associated with innovation and technology.
Apple also knows just how big an impact out-of-home advertising has, and quite literally. Their “Shot on iPhone” outdoor advertising campaign brings photos shot on iPhones from our small mobile screens to the billboards’ big screens. This award-winning campaign that started in 2015 still continues on today. Since 2015, Apple has featured professional and amateur photographers’ iPhone photos in various creative billboards across the globe. This year, Apple launched the “Shot on iPhone on Tour” campaign showcasing its musical ties. The smartphone brand toured with different musicians and unveiled photos taken by famous musician photographers. Since 2015, these iPhone photos have been transformed from digital mobile photos to gigantic billboards across various locations including Intermark Mall’s pedestrian bridge in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
If Samsung puts a focus on digital billboards, Apple gives their all into static billboards. If one has been studying and following the outdoor advertisements that Apple has put up in the past few years, you’ll notice that they don’t focus very much on the phone itself but focus more on its phone’s features. Apple brings their iPhone photos onto larger-than-life static billboards instead of other types of media to be able to show us how high the resolution of their iPhone cameras are. Their “Shot on iPhone” advertisements greatly prove this, as they roll out high resolution billboards in different cities — big or small — across the world. For their billboards, Apple always uses bold and vibrant colors. They also keep it aesthetically simple and clean, just like their products. Apple’s team are very meticulous about the details of their billboards too. It’s great to wonder just how much maintenance is invested into their billboards to keep their quality, cleanliness, and vibrancy.
As creative as these brands can get with their billboards, they’ve also put humor into the mix by battling each other through out-of-home advertising. At a Brisbane shopping mall, Huawei bought a digital billboard’s ad space directly above Samsung’s flagship store. That wasn’t the first time Huawei has trolled their competitors. They also rolled out creative billboard advertisements on moving trucks that would park directly in front of Apple and Samsung stores.
The Perfect Media (TPM Outdoor) has worked with various electronic and telecommunication brands such as Oppo, Vivo, Advan, Daikin, Singtel, and Telkomsel. TPM Outdoor has provided billboard spaces to these brands in various countries like Singapore, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Bangladesh, and more. A creative billboard advertisement in Singapore with Daikin, the air conditioner brand, also had an outdoor thermometer attached to it. Not only did the billboard inform consumers of the temperature, it also informed them of Daikin’s air conditioner brand that could greatly influence their purchasing decisions.
A great location to advertise smartphones are at airports, especially departure halls. When people travel, they tend to take many selfies and photos to share to others. Also, many people who travel are usually prepared or eager to purchase goods, including smartphones, while abroad. Furthermore, travellers have a lot of down time at airports which means there’s also a lot of time for them to browse their surroundings. One’s outdoor advertisements will definitely get attention in these areas.
There are many smart, creative, and innovative ways to using outdoor advertising that allow smartphone and electronic brands to reach consumers, whether it be static or digital billboards. Even with the rise of mobile advertising, OOH media is still considered an effective and crucial part of smartphone brands’ campaigns. Their ability to mix digital innovation, creativity, and even humor into their billboard advertisements not only get the attention of consumers but also remember them. We definitely look forward to what else these smartphone brands have up their sleeves when it comes to their smart billboard advertisements.
Disclaimer: Some observations above are based on The Perfect Media’s and the author’s opinions and industry experience. We are open to feedback if there are any errors made in this article.