Musicians Use OOH to Tease Fans, Ignite Social Engagement

Recording artists and bands love OOH tease-and-reveal campaigns. They use cryptic messages in major markets to engage super fans, ignite social media, and hype big announcements.

The most recent example comes from alternative hip-hop duo Twenty One Pilots (TØP). On July 9, a year after the band went publicly silent, fans around the world woke to find mysterious billboards in major international markets such as Berlin, London, and Toronto featuring the band’s new logo. TØP had also applied the new look across social media accounts.

TØP online fan pages and social media users began to circulate pictures of the OOH ads, excited for the band’s return and also offering theories on the meaning of the ads. The reveal was made via the band’s Twitter handle: after a year-long hiatus, two new tracks were available, a full album forthcoming, and a planned world tour.

In early June, pop-rock artist Panic! at the Disco encouraged its fans to crack the code behind 28 mysterious billboards across the United States. Followers quickly took to social media sharing photos of the ads from all locations, joining others on a virtual scavenger hunt to solve the mystery. Via Twitter, the band revealed the ads were a teaser to announce the second leg of it’s anticipated tour.

Panic! at the Disco continues to use OOH to promote its tour, album, and partnership with YouTube Music, tweeting images of OOH to nearly 3 million followers.

Also in June, Drake used digital billboards to tease a surprise about his upcoming album. According to Billboard magazine, “several billboards in Toronto with texts reading ‘Side A/Side B’ left fans dumbfounded, as many wondered if Drake would be aiming to release a double-album.”

Drake, who has used OOH tease-and-reveal campaigns often to release music, confirmed his Scorpion album would indeed have two sides. He even included footage of his billboards in a promo video featured socially.