Best 3D Billboards in Outdoor Spaces

Billboards are fairly noticeable, when placed in the best settings, and capable of holding their own as advertising mediums, but 3D billboards are impactful creations made up of a structural and interesting graphic design plan. 3D billboards do more than simply exist in outdoor spaces; they add excitement to an ordinary neighborhood. With the use of humor, wit, and freshness, 3D billboards are able to bring another advertising element to the table of a marketing mix- one that strongly plays with space.

Outdoor advertising is a market that’s only growing bigger and, with the help of modern designs implemented in 3D billboards, easily the most memorable. According to some statistics laid out by Dash Two, OOH advertising is ranked #2 just behind digital advertising as the fastest-growing forms of advertising worldwide, and 55% of consumers surveyed said that they were “highly engaged” by an outdoor advertisement’s message. This is very different than, say, television advertising where consumers lose focus in the ads due to them being perceived as interruptions. Rather than interrupt, 3D billboards intrigue audiences. 

Let’s highlight four major 3D billboards that have lived to see another day in the advertising world, and have proved their marketing effectiveness. These OOH executions have received international praise.


Pizza shares space with a fictional billboard in this Donatos ad


Donatos Pizza  

This 3D billboard in Columbus, Ohio is the perfect example of a sweet interference and ad cross-over. The 3D components of this billboard reside in the stringy cheese and pizza slice that the news reporter is more than happy to take a bite out of. Because Donatos appears to share its billboard space with a breaking news announcement, it seems like this pizza business completely took over the shine of the other advertisement. But, in reality, Donatos owns both spaces and have created one billboard that cohesively sells their new hand tossed pizza in a creative way. By making it appear as though another billboard is hungry for Donatos pizza, this business played to their delicious strengths in alluring the masses down below. This advertisement works as a 3D billboard because it brings the main product to life and uses a 3D cheesy path to bring the pizza slice to the man, unrelated to Donatos, in the square beside it. Upon closer inspection, the man’s finger is also 3D so he’s able to lift the pizza slice. This small detail adds to the sharp effectiveness of the advertisement. 


A New York City apartment is powered by IKEA in this Absolut bottled 3D billboard  


Absolut New York 

Absolut and IKEA teamed up to create this 3D billboard in New York City that resembles a tight, furnished apartment in Manhattan taking the shape of the Absolut Vodka bottle. Using 3D furniture that sticks out from the wood panel on the billboard space completely brings this ad to fruition. Although Absolut has done a ton of other iconic outdoor advertisements, this 3D billboard is one of their most outstanding because it dares to defy gravity while showcasing IKEA products. It’s also quite nuanced to replace the bottle cap with a bathtub, which shows their outside-the-box imagination now brought to reality. The precise details in this ad, such as the pair of slippers on the bathroom floor, propels audiences to spend more time observing this outdoor sensation. This works as a 3D billboard because it showcases realistic looking IKEA products while still maintaining the Absolut bottle effect. This 3D billboard has a similar design to an upside-down house featured in a museum, which is a gimmick that immediately attracts audiences. 


3D strength is at the forefront of this Formula billboard


Formula Toothpaste “Bite” 

Great 3D billboards build strong responses, like Formula toothpaste builds strong teeth. This ambient ad in Indonesia uses the metal base, that a billboard is held up, by as a prop to effectively deliver the message of superhuman strength. It appears as though the man in the billboard is ripping apart the billboard’s hinges through his high-powered teeth made by Formula. The advertiser’s message is clear, and the exaggerated execution registers. Done by Ogilvy & Mather, this ad works as a 3D billboard because it takes advantage of the basics. It uses the structure that a billboard rests on to effectively deliver its mighty message. By making it seem like the man in the billboard is pulling the billboard and the metal up by his teeth, Formula is telling an indicative story that their product is the most powerful in all the land. 


A loop-de-loop addition to an ordinary highway expresses new imaginations for the Hot Wheels brand


Hot Wheels “Curl” 

Ogilvy is killing it in the 3D billboard department. This fun outdoor advertisement in Bogota, Colombia adds an unrealistic, but show-stopping, highway loop-de-loop attachment to a regular bridge ramp. This larger than life, imaginative advertising touch taps into nostalgia with Hot Wheels and the experience of creating your own thrill-seeking roads. As cars would drive past this billboard execution, children and their parents are able to fully visualize and remember the delight of the Hot Wheels product. For such a simple 3D OOH, the effectiveness is magnetic. This works as a 3D billboard because it reshapes an ordinary road into a loop that many are familiar with when playing with Hot Wheels. Essentially, it turns rags into riches. 

Donatos, Absolut paired with IKEA, Formula, and Hot Wheels have all created effective 3D billboards that interest the likes of anyone in their locations. Through sharing spaces, furniture pop-ups, structural damage, and an iconic curl, these 3D billboards help make outdoor advertising reputable. 


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