Is simple and static better?
October 30, 2007 by Dave Haynes
The former chairman of ad giant Zenith Optimedia, Simon Marquis, wrote a piece Monday in the UK’s Guardian newspaper about the evolution of outdoor advertising.
He goes on about how the old notion of guys in overalls, clutching glue brushes and strips of poster paper, is somewhat antiquated given the ongoing switch to digital. He says all kinds of opportunities open up because these posters and billboards are now turned on, but he’s not convinced that makes for more effective advertising.
… outdoor is an all-comers’ medium – its two-dimensional nature is not a shortcoming but positively liberating: a good, simple brand message is all that’s required.
The digitisation of media means that outdoor is becoming capable of performing more and more extravagant tricks. Huge screens at railway stations are not really posters but out-of-home television or public-arena cinema.
I wonder whether this is necessarily a good thing. To my mind, the single most powerful reason for outdoor’s enduring power as an advertising vehicle is that it is one of the last bastions of the simple static image. Ironically, it is its very lack of sound and movement that draws the observer in, providing something for the brain to engage with actively.
Simple, I agree with entirely. Static, not so sure.