What are Advertising Hoardings?

Posted by Octink on Mar 6, 2019 4:07:31 PM

Simple backdrop or vibrant advertising space?

We see hoardings everywhere, every day! They frame our morning commute. They are the backdrop to our lunch time walks. Their purpose is to mask unsightly building works and keep the public safe from the building work going on beyond. In short, they’re an essential part of development works.

But now marketers can see (quite literally!) the huge advertising potential of these printed panels. A They have the power to position products in plain sight but in a less intrusive manner than billboards. So – what are advertising hoardings?

At Octink we have experience in this field and we’d like to share our knowledge.

Battersea Power Station Hoardings

What is a hoarding?


They are defined as ‘a temporary boarded fence in a public place, usually erected around a building site‘. These are used to protect the public from works and hide the building site. In addition, these can also display messaging and advertisements. Printing and installing these hoardings is what we do best. You can see real life examples of hoardings printed by Octink here.


Usually they serve two common purposes. Firstly, the obvious health and safety requirements. Secondly, promotion. However, this is just the tip of the iceberg.

Health and Safety

The Shard Hoardings

We cannot shy away from the legal and regulatory reasons that hoardings are erected – health and safety. They separate the public from the potentially hazardous building works. On one side, they are a clean, ‘public-facing’ surface. Meanwhile, on the other, they provide a space for all essential health and safety messages necessary for HSE site compliance. You can see our Construction Site Hoarding here.

However, what are advertising hoardings used for?

Building up excitement

Colindale Advertising branding hoardings

Just by hiding a site behind a hoarding, natural curiosity is peaked from the very start. Similarly, imagery and graphics printed on the panels depicting what is being built can spark fever pitch excitement for the big reveal. Namely, a call to action such as a web address or telephone number can generate customer leads. This can be particularly effective for for new homes, retail and rental spaces. Forget to use hoardings at your peril! Correct use will complement the rest of the marketing communication strategy.

Brand Recognition

Southbank Place perimeter branding advertising hoardings and signage scheme by Octink

Hoardings are often designed to help people recognise a place or brand. For example, retailers can show exactly which shop is going into a scheme. Equally, property developers use them to show who is responsible for the site. Significantly, this increases their brand’s recognition. Hoardings can also introduce a new name for an area or site as part of a place-making strategy. This is used to engage a local community so it can become part of the landscape and local area.

Directional Messaging

Advertising Hoardings at Chobham Manor

Directional graphics on the printed panels can form a vital part of any way-finding strategy. This can be useful in vast locations such as large scale property developments and regeneration zones. Customers need to find information points or sales and marketing suites quickly. Without this, the alternative is wandering aimlessly around a huge site – which is annoying and not good for business! To be sure, you should include necessary messaging alongside your advertising. Above all, this shows keen attention to detail which will aid the whole customer experience.

Advertising and Marketing

Southbank Place perimeter branding advertising hoardings and signage scheme by Octink

Hoardings are often used for advertising and marketing purposes as already mentioned. They are usually positioned in locations with high public footfall around a site. This means they are perfectly placed to display advertising. Attention grabbing elements such as viewing points, 3D lettering and digital displays can also compliment static graphics. In addition, these bespoke elements make for an eye-grabbing installation and make best use of the space. Also, advertising space could be sold on to 3rd party advertisers. You can see real world examples of Octink’s Advertising Hoardings here.


Millbank clear hoardings

Finally, a bespoke hoarding will enhance the look of a space during the development phase. Octink use a range of methods to elevate hoardings into art installations. These can include illumination like the hoarding at Southbank Place. In addition, we can supply cut lettering like on our hoarding at Battersea Power Station. Similarly, moving elements can be used like in the Dollar Bay hoarding can be implimented. More recently, we created the Millbank clear hoarding on bespoke substrates. Indeed, there is no doubt that we have history and experience in this field. You can read more about our Bespoke Hoardings here.

Octink have an unrivalled experience of making hoardings. Past projects include the prestigious hoarding at W1. The historic redevelopment at Royal Arsenal. In addition, the hoarding at The Shard. These are alongside many, many more hoardings for the UK’s house builders.

If you have any questions or want to talk to us about a project, you can contact us directly here.

Topics: Hoardings, advertising hoardings, Latest News, Building Site Hoarding