Twitter has taken off in a fury of 140 character statements. But what happens when you have less characters than that? Billboard design has yet to catch fire in this decade. It is a complicated medium that not many have perfected.

Take a second during your next drive and just look up at all the billboards. Do a brief analysis of what companies are advertising and what they advertise about. I am guessing in a 15 minute drive you might see one well done billboard and none that are excellent.

There are a couple guidelines to keep in mind when you want to budget a billboard into your next marketing plan.

1. Keep it short. Motorists are driving by at 40 MPH, listening to the radio and talking on their phones.

2. How Short? 7 words or less. I know it is not a lot of words. Short and sweet is by far the hardest but could be the most beneficial. If anyone wants to complain about how hard it is to write short copy please read this post (link to-------).

3. Be focused with your message. You have 7 words don’t try to cover 2 topics.

4.Pick a visual that reinforces your message. This seems like a no brainer but careful planning and lots of creative thinking can produce the perfect message/copy/image combination.

So like Twitters wild success in funny, smart and witty 140 character comments, get to work on a harder medium, billboards.