The billboard scene in Los Angeles is booming. This type of advertising has always been a hot commodity, but since Netflix purchased more than a dozen boards along the Sunset Strip, it seems everyone wants in on the fun.
And little wonder, because billboards offer the best way to promote your product to an active audience throughout LA. Everyone’s on the go, and they’ll notice your messages when you buy up space on the area’s most-traveled freeways or near its most exclusive neighborhoods. Netflix understood the power of sheer presence. Billboards across the city are in high demand.
So how do you decide where you should advertise, and what will it cost you? As an out of home agency located in the LA area, DASH TWO has the answers to these questions. We put together this guide to billboards in Los Angeles to help advertisers considering a buy in the Hollywood area and beyond. We’ll offer insider tips on finding the right placements, too. Let’s dive in.
Los Angeles Market Profile
LA is the second-biggest city in the United States, with almost 4 million residents. The diversity of the city has increased in the past few decades, with Hispanics now making up nearly half the population. A little less than 30% are white, and Asians and African-Americans account for about 10% apiece.
The median household income in the city is just below $56,000. The city is about half female and half male, and young — just 12% are over age 65. The median price of housing is $599,700.
Types of Billboards Available in LA
The size of billboard in Los Angeles breaks down like other cities across the country. There are three main choices:
- Bulletins: These are the biggest boards, usually located in high-traffic areas, favored by big companies with big budgets
- Posters: Also referred to as 30 sheets, these are medium-sized boards that generally attract advertisers with smaller budgets who still want decent coverage
- Junior posters: Small businesses favor these small boards, also called 8 sheets and more often located in smaller neighborhoods
Digital Billboards in Los Angeles
The number of digital billboards in California has increased threefold in the past decade, but that growth has not extended to LA. Los Angeles was the site of an early showdown over this type of advertising, with the city council banning new digital billboards in 2009. The signs are allowed only in certain areas in or near the city, including Inglewood, Hollywood and Sunset Boulevard.
A more recent fight brewing in the city saw a city council member introduce legislation that would ban mobile digital billboards on cars. These have become common ways for Uber and Lyft drivers to supplement their income. We’ll see what comes out of it — people in the industry are keeping an eye on the outcome.
Billboard Pricing in Los Angeles
In Los Angeles, average billboard pricing generally ranges from $2,000 to $15,000 per month, depending where you purchase space. The cost is more expensive than New York City but less than you’ll pay in Chicago or Philadelphia, two other big cities. But prices can go well above that for expensive areas depending on the time of the year.
The most in-demand places command the highest prices for billboards. Other factors come into play, too. Right-hand reads, or boards located on the right side of the street, are priced higher than left-hand reads because they are easier to read while whizzing past in a car.
Boards that are obscured by buildings or overgrown trees may also be priced lower. We always recommend riding out to see the placement of the billboard so you know exactly what you’re getting. You want prime location, but you also want people to be able to see your message clearly from their cars or when passing by.
Other factors that play into billboard pricing in Los Angeles include:
- Location within the neighborhood
- Demographics of the neighborhood
- Impressions the billboard delivers
Where to Buy Billboards in Los Angeles
Where you decide to pursue billboards depends on what you’re selling and who you want to target. For instance, indie music labels want to connect with trendsetters and those most likely to know their artists and purchase their music. They favor areas such as:
Many clients approach us with an interest in advertising in Santa Monica, but alas there are no billboards there. You can use transit advertising instead.
The 405 is a popular choice for advertisers. There you get a lot of dead time, too — people sitting in traffic who will notice your boards while they wait for accidents to clear.
Here’s a breakdown of the most desirable neighborhoods and how much it costs to buy space in them.
Billboards on the Sunset Strip
The most expensive place to purchase billboards in Los Angeles, the Sunset Strip in West Hollywood houses a great deal of out of home real estate. This one-mile stretch between Beverly Hills (where there are no billboards) and Los Angeles includes a lot of top nightlife venues, like The Viper Room and Whisky a Go Go. A billboard on Sunset can run $80,000 to $90,000 for a four-week stint.
Billboards at Melrose and Fairfax
Billboards at Melrose and Fairfax aren’t too far from the Strip, but they are a whole lot cheaper. Often advertisers who dream of the prestige of a Sunset Strip sign but can’t afford the pricetag can move to Melrose and Fairfax, where a four-week run on a billboard costs less than $20,000, usually around $11,500.
Billboards in Beverly Grove
Located in Mid City West, by the popular outdoor shopping center The Grove, Beverly Grove is popular with mid-range fashion companies. Boards average about $7,000 to $8,000 per month, though they can go for as high as $15,000.
Ad Categories That Do Well on Los Angeles Billboards
As you might expect, the ad categories that dominate Los Angeles billboards are largely industry-related. You will see tons of boards advertising:
- TV shows on broadcast, cable and streaming networks
- New movies
- New music albums
- Fashion lines
Of course, during awards seasons you’ll also see boards purchased by studios and music labels touting their big names for nominations.
Are you interested in buying a billboard in LA? We can make the experience easy for you. Contact us today to learn more about the best options available for you in the market.