There’s Power in Print

Printed graphics prove to be a powerful communication method.

“Regardless of your perspective, you can’t deny the power of print.” 

I tweeted this during my pre-relocation trip to San Francisco last September. Our hotel just happened to be by Union Square on the same day Nike installed its controversial billboard of former 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick. The ad above the athletic-apparel shop featured the football player and activist’s face with the words “Believe in something, even if it means sacrificing everything.” SF morning commuters and tourists stopped to stare at, chat about, and snap pics of the giant display; and across the nation and on all social platforms, differing opinions were shared.   Twitter SF

Regardless of your perspective, you can’t deny the power of print. The printed work you create for billboards, buses, and building wraps has the potential to spark an idea, create dialogue, make someone laugh, lead to the purchase of a new product, and/or consider something in a new light. It’s not only about the revenue you earn; consider the effect of what you print, too. 

Take our annual feature of our favorite out-of-home projects from the Out of Home Advertising Association of America’s 2019 OBIE Awards (see pg. 16), for example. The David Bowie stair graphics serve as an instant reminder to add “Under Pressure” to your Spotify playlist. The red, white, and blue bus wrap can urge a passerby to register to vote. And the supersized draft beer might make a car full of road trippers pull over for a craft brew and a slice of ‘za. 

For me, the Nike ad led me straight to social media. I couldn’t wait to share the just-installed graphics with my Big Picture followers. While I was busy taking pictures of the billboard and posting on Twitter, my fiancé was taking a picture of me, taking a photo of the billboard. On his own social media, he shared the image with the caption: “It’s always refreshing to see people excited about their profession. #DoCoolStuff.”

If you’ve ever had a conversation with me, you know I can’t end the chat without adding: “We’re always looking for cool case studies to share in the magazine!” I’m so excited to see the work you complete because it’s impactful – to me, to our readers, to strangers on the street. When the prints you create evoke emotion, change attitudes, or move someone to do something, that’s the power of print.

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