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It has been so long since I ever paid attention to any of the outdoor advertising in Bahrain which speaks volumes in itself.

As an agency guy, I have this annoying habit to look at every advert to appreciate it’s design or creativity.

So I decided to pay attention to the billboards today

I was actually surprised to notice the following:

  1. Most the billboards were empty.  I mean empty.  Lamp Posts, Megacoms everything.
  2. I remember the days where all the telecoms seemed to be battling it out in their outdoor adverts, they used to cover Bahrain with their ads. I struggled to find any today, actually found none.
  3. The only companies who did have adverts, were either governmental or large corporations such as banks and insurance companies.

So is outdoor advertising dead?

Let’s face it, we knew it would die eventually, may you rest in peace.

Online advertising has finally taken over outdoor advertising in Bahrain.  Which makes total sense.

It is much more cost effective and provides better results to invest in online ads, which is 2 way communication, has engagement, and call to actions, rather then a silly billboard, with a horrible design.

The cost per click or engagement in your online ads, would in general be a maximum of 300 fils, or 1 us dollar but your impressions are much cheaper.  For around 200 BHD, facebook would probably show your ad to the whole country.

The cost of a stretch of 5 lamp posts would be minimum 750 BHD, and larger billboards would go for thousands.

Advertising isn’t dead, but the message could be

Trust me, no one will ever look at your social media icons, or phone number, or website, if your cramping it all in with your essay of a message.

Outdoor advertising is only effective, if you limit your ads to about 5 words maximum.

People are driving by, they dont have time to read your essay, and if they did they would definitely have an accident.  So for those of you who spend money on writing paragraphs, you could more wisely spend that money, on renting a suite at the Ritz for a week.  At least then you could have fun and enjoy the money spent.

In conclusion, its going to be very interesting to see the developments moving forward, but in this economy, I don’t feel outdoor advertising companies will survive, unless they reduce their prices, which in turn means the municipality reducing their charges for the locations.

But even if you decide to spend on online advertising, the messaging is just as important, and I will write another blog post in this regard.

Hussain Husaini

Hussain Husaini

Hussain Husaini is the founder of Hustle Kitchen and Flashh Deals app. A veteran marketer, and a sales and marketing consultant, with over 10 years experience in the marketing, digital and sales industry.