How to Make the Best Chicago Billboards

Billboard ad campaigns have proven time and time again to be a great way to get your business in the mind of the general public. It is even better if your billboard is the best out there.

Read on to discover how you can make the best Chicago billboards.

It’s All About Location

The first thing you will want to pay attention to during the planning of your Chicago billboard ad campaign is location. While most billboards are strategically placed in highly trafficked areas, not all of them are equally as effective. So, here are a few locations you will want your billboards to be located near.


First up is airports. Chicago is home to a couple of large airports that see thousands of people every day. The O’Hare International Airport is a great example of a place that sees a lot of traffic. If you want to ensure that your ad will be seen by many, this is not a bad way to go.

Tourists Attractions

Chicago is a big city with plenty of tourist attractions to go around. Targeting tourists with out-of-home media is effective because they are already in the city intending to make purchases. Here are a few tourist attractions you may want your ad to be close to.

  • Wrigley Field
  • The Art Institute of Chicago
  • Navy Pier
  • Millennium Park
  • Shedd Aquarium


When you think of billboards, there is one location in particular that you probably imagine them near. It is highways, right? Highways and interstates are home to a captive audience of commuters and tourists alike. Commuters make the same drive presumably five days a week, meaning they will certainly see your billboard at least one of those days each week. Here are a few examples of popular Chicago interstates.

  • Interstate 55: Stevenson Expy
  • Interstate 90: Kennedy Expy and Dan Ryan Expy
  • Interstate 95: Dan Ryan Expy
  • Interstate 290: Chicago-Kansas City Expy

Higher Education

If you wish to target your products or service toward college students, do it. College campuses are great locations to target during your ad campaign. The University of Illinois is the perfect location for this. With upwards of 50,000 students, your ad has a good chance of making a strong impact.

Sports Arenas and Stadiums

Last but certainly not least, sports arenas. If you wish to target sports enthusiasts and concertgoers, placing billboards around stadiums is a great way to get your ad noticed by these targeted audiences. Here are a few Chicago stadiums you should know about.

  • Wrigley Field
  • United Center
  • SeatGeek Stadium
  • Soldier Field
  • Guaranteed Rate Field

The Design Matters

Okay, now that you have an idea of a few prime locations for your billboard ad campaign, it is time to discuss designs. For the most part, each of these locations attracts different demographics. Since there are different demographics, you either need to make your ads very universal or specific to each location. Here are a few tips for each one.


Airports typically hold people traveling on business as well as those starting or finishing their vacations. These are two pretty specific demographics with their own needs. Making a design that lends itself to the average person with a profession in business is a great place to start here.

Tourists Attractions

Tourists are an ad campaign’s best friend. As mentioned earlier, tourists are already visiting a place to make purchases and splurge a little. If you are targeting tourists, it is a good idea to make a carefree design that lends itself to splurging.


As you know, highways are packed full with every demographic there is. When designing a highway billboard, it is best to stay as universal as possible so you can relate to as many demographics as possible.

Higher Education

Billboards placed in and around universities and colleges should tend to younger generations of varying backgrounds. So, keep this design relatively universal while targeting the younger generation.

Sports Arenas and Stadiums

Sports arenas can be pretty self-explanatory. Here you will find sports enthusiasts, families, and concertgoers. A good mix of universal and sports-targeted billboards could come in handy in locations like these.

Do Your Research

Knowing where all the prime billboard locations are and what kind of designs to put on them is critical to a successful ad campaign. But you still need to research what is best for your company and your brand.

The best billboard does not mean that it is the most catchy or the best location. It means it is the best design for the right demographic in the best location with a direct message that points people to your company. To properly do this you and your marketing team must do the necessary research.

The Takeaway

The main ingredients that make a billboard great are its location and design. To successfully create the best billboard, you must do your research and learn the best location and design to appropriately reach the best demographic for your business.


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