Week 6 ENT 610: Billboard Ad Analysis

  1. This ad shows a person sitting in the back seat of a car with no seat belt on. They want us to feel the fear of being shot out of the car and the distance a back-seat passenger would fly if there was an accident.  They are trying to encourage the use of seat belts in the back.  Although this ad was created and used in Australia, it could be used in the USA too.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s most current statistics (2014) show that motor vehicle crashes are a leading cause of death for those ages 1-54.  Of the 21,022-people killed in motor vehicle crashes in 2014, more than half were unrestrained at the time of the accident.
  2. Encouraging people to use a seat belt in the back seat is the goal of the billboard. Depending on how Australia tracks their motor vehicle incidents, it might be difficult to capture whether, in the short term, this objective was met.  In the USA, we have the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), which tracks the number of deaths and causes of accidents on our highways.  NHTSA also investigates general safety issues on our roads. If the billboard remained up for a 5-year period, it might be possible to measure its impact by collecting accident-related data and controlling for other factors that may cause accidents.
  3. The target market for this ad is young people. Many people do not hesitate to buckle up when they are in the front seat but for some reason neglect to do the same in the back seat.  Young people may think they are safer in the back and some may think it is not “cool” to buckle up.
  4. The viewer needs to buckle up and be safe. The act of buckling up will keep you from being ejected if there is an accident. Even if a person buckles up they still might be injured in the event of an accident yet be saved from death.
  5. The value proposition of this ad is that life is valuable and worth staying around for. The reason a person uses a seat belt is to protect themselves and/or their family members.   My mother was unrestrained in the back seat when the vehicle she was in was rear-ended.  She has suffered with a neck problem ever since from being thrown against the seat in front of her.  Luckily this accident was not at a high speed or she might have been thrown out of the vehicle.  Now she never sits in the back without the seat belt on.

  1. This billboard looks like it is an advertisement for the Wathan Funeral Home. If you text and drive then we will be there to bury you.  When I first saw the billboard, I thought it was clever and true, albeit a bit dicey trying to gather business with brutal honestly.  It was not until I did some research on the billboard when I found out there is no such entity as the Wathan Funeral Home.  It is actually a public service announcement created in Montreal, Canada.
  2. The objective was to create honest awareness of what happens when a person texts and drives. The likelihood of getting in an accident and dying is very high.  This ad may offend some people because it is so out there but it will also get people talking about it.  Perhaps if they talk about the billboard they might even stop some of the texting. Like the first ad, Canada’s Transport Canada department tracks statistics on their highways. They could measure year-to-year numbers to determine whether fatalities went down due to texting.
  3. This ad is for anyone who drives. Look around when you are stopped at a light or in a traffic jam and see who is texting — is seems like everyone is.
  4. It is clear they want the viewer to stop texting and concentrate on driving.  It also is to inform people that the consequence of texting is death and nothing less.  If people quit texting and driving, everyone will be safer.
  5. I think the value proposition in this ad is life and how quickly it can be lost. There is no casket or funeral service to be purchased from this ad but there is one’s life and staying around to enjoy it.  Texting takes the focus completely off the driving and puts the mind and the hands in another place.  By choosing not to text, not only may you be saving your life, the life of those you are driving, but the lives of people you do not even know.

  1. This half-completed billboard is for Lowe’s, a home improvement and appliance store. They clearly used humor to motivate us to react to this billboard.  We have shopped at Lowe’s for years and I laughed when I saw this billboard especially since I have a few of my own half-completed projects.
  2. The ad was telling us to go visit Lowe’s and they will help us complete those half-finished projects. Not only will we finish those projects, we can do it without breaking the bank.  Their tag line “Let’s Build Something Together” (especially for people not in the trades) tells the viewer they are a store where one is not only buying products but service from people who can help you complete your projects.  It would be challenging to measure unfinished projects in a community where this billboard is posted.  I do think they could measure foot traffic in the stores to see if sales increased during the time it was outside.  Also, they could link a coupon either online or using direct mail during the same time period with the same picture to draw people in and see if that creates more traffic to their stores.
  3. I think this is targeted to the “honey dos” as my friends in the trades call them. When one person asks the other person during the week “honey can you do————” this weekend. It then requires purchases from Lowe’s and advice from their employees. The target audience is also people who have professions that don’t require them to build things yet enjoy doing some things themselves.  These people may have started a project but never finished it and it’s Lowe’s to the rescue.
  4. The billboard wants the viewer to come to Lowe’s. Lowe’s can help us with all those projects.  No judgement from Lowe’s and they we will help you get the half-finished projects completed and it will not be too expensive. I think the viewer will have a sense of satisfaction of knowing they can get projects finished.  They might even be encouraged to start a new project or complete more (if there are any) unfinished projects.
  5. The value proposition for Lowe’s is their depth of products, level of service and locations. They have a variety of products for people in the trades and do it yourselfers.  In addition, they have a huge gardening section, appliances, home remodel design area and equipment rentals.   They also have friendly and knowledgeable sales people.  People also go to Lowe’s because it may be the only option in their area.  They compete directly with Home Depot and often one or the other is not in a neighborhood.

  1. This billboard is from PETA, People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, and they are asking us not to eat turkeys. They used humor and love with this ad.  It is funny to see a cat’s face on the body of a turkey.  It would not be funny to see our pet become the holiday meal, in fact, horribly sad, since we love them so much and devote a lot of resources to keeping them healthy and protecting them from harm.
  2. This ad wants kids to think about what they are eating, especially during the holidays. The reference to the turkey would be around Thanksgiving, when sales of turkey are higher than any other time of the year.  By using “your pet” in the body of the turkey they are trying to bring awareness to the viewer that all animals are equal even if they are not the family pet.  I think it would be very difficult to measure impact of this ad.  What might be measurable would be hits on the local PETA website in the surrounding area during the time the ad was running.
  3. This billboard is directed at children. Interesting how if you just read the items highlighted and written in red, “Kids, eat your cat”, I imagine that would create a lot of conversation in the car.
  4. The ad wants us to go vegan, meaning they want children and adults to not eat any products made from an animal. I also think they want to spark a conversation between children and their parents about eating animals. The ad does not tell us what will happen if we stop eating animals and it can only be inferred.  If we stop eating animals, we are thought of as being kinder and caring individuals towards all sentient beings.
  5. The value proposition of being a member of PETA and following their principles is in joining an organization that has a proven history of making a difference. PETA has been around for 37 years and has always been about protecting the rights of animals. They educate and advocate on behalf of animals all over the world.  People join and participate in their events, fundraising, protesting and education because of their strong beliefs and the pursuit of keeping animals safe from harm. It gives the participants a feeling they too can help make a difference in at least the lives of some animals.  It takes the viewer away from being a bystander into action mode.

  1. This Los Angeles ad immediately grabs the viewers’ attention with the word “SEX”.  It is funny to put sex and the Subway sandwich shop in the same sentence.  Of course, everyone will look at this billboard.  It is titillating and makes me think of billboards on the I-15 north from California to Las Vegas but they were not selling sandwiches.
  2. The objective was to garner our attention with the one word and it did. Now that we have your attention, go to Subway and get some food.  I think the ad does grab one’s attention but that is it.  Oh, it is for Subway, okay but what do they sell and the word sex does not equate to a good meal.  This would be hard to measure as there are 50 Subway shops in Los Angeles.  I don’t know if it would drive traffic to their stores but it certainly might have people talking about the billboard.
  3. I think they are targeting all adults.
  4. They want us to look and advertisers know sex sells. The ad wants us to look closer, read the small print and go get a sandwich at a Subway. If we go to a Subway we will have a good meal.
  5. The value proposition with this ad is that Subway is another established brand. They have been around for over 50 years.  They have more than 5000 stores and they do not rest on their past achievements but work hard to see food trends and incorporate them into the Subway menu.  They are one of the first fast food chains to offer healthy options.













6 thoughts on “Week 6 ENT 610: Billboard Ad Analysis

  1. Hi Cece,

    Let me just say that I thought each of the ads you chose were pretty unique, creative, and effective. If I had to pick two of my favorites, though, I think it would be the Lowes ad and the funeral home texting ad. The Lowes ad doesn’t beg for attention, but it definitely draws your eyes to it. I like that about it a lot, because sometimes it seems that ads beg for our attention too much – and that can seem desperate which leads me to think “maybe their product or service isn’t too good if they have to act that desperate.”

    Finally, I had seen the funeral home ad before but never knew that it wasn’t an actual funeral home. That is pretty brilliant. Texting and driving is so dangerous.

    Great work,

  2. Hi Cece,
    I like the billboards you selected they really get your attention. They are funny and stick in your head. I think when you try to get someone’s attention in a few seconds as they drive by you have to put some effort into doing so.
    SlingShot – the 3D sling shot really hits home with the backseat drivers and they need to have their seat belt on too. People from the back of the car can be slung all over the place if an accident was to occur.
    Text & Drive – Sure, why not, your are helping this business if you text and drive. This is a little morbid, but it gets your attention it may have been better to have the name of their business a little bit bigger.
    Unfinished Projects – I was thinking why did you post this billboard it’s broken until I read it and realized it was for Lowe’s. Make sense and makes the fixer in you wanna to go and purchase something at Lowes to fix it or fix something that you have been putting off around the house.
    Cat Turkey – Hillarious! Some people like to eat cat. I get the idea of what PETA is trying to convey about being a Vegan and I am not trying to through off on people that do not eat meat. But that cat looking like a Turkey makes me hungry.
    Sex (Subway) – hahaha! gets your attention Spot On! You can be sexy and eat at Subway.
    Thanks for sharing

  3. Hi Cece,

    You selected some great outdoor advertising billboards! I thought they were all great! The funniest one was Lowe’s! How clever! And, I laugh because it’s so true — I have lots of unfinished projects, that I need to go back to Lowe’s so I can finish. And the Text and Drive billboard, I saw the ad and then I read your analysis. When you mentioned that it was for a funeral home, I had to go back and re-read the billboard. My brain instantly thought it said “Don’t text and drive”, just because we hear and see this all the time. And, yes you are right, just look around you while you drive and or are stopped — so many people playing with their phones!

    Great job,


  4. My favorite is the Sex, Subway ad. I can’t stop laughing at this. It catches the attention. The Peta ad was disturbing to me. Turkeys are raised for food not as pets, so saying a child should equate their cat; a pet is not effective to me. I also think as you pointed out the red letters can give a child the wrong idea. The Lowes billboard is clever and creative. It appeals to everyone with half finished projects.

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