The Most Popular Aerial Advertising Markets in 2023
March 24, 2023
Aerial advertising is a unique and highly effective way to build brands and drive visibility involving massive billboard displays and eye-catching messages in the sky. Brands include aerial campaigns in their marketing mix because they reach a large and diverse audience, are highly-customizable, and can fly in just about any geographic market in the US.
While Aerial Billboards are often seen flying over popular beaches, more brands are realizing the power of this one-of-a-kind advertising medium in reaching target audiences all year round. Advertising in the sky is a can’t-miss way to get your message in front of influential and affluent consumers at sporting events, music festivals, and cities across the country.
So, which are the most sought-after geographic markets for aerial advertising campaigns in 2023?
The windy city is home to a diverse population, thriving business community, and a constant stream of visitors, making it a great market for aerial advertising. The city’s numerous sports venues and cultural events also provide opportunities for promoting events and products. In addition to the city’s beachfront along Lake Michigan, Chicago is host to some of the largest food and music events in the U.S., and of course, passionate sports fans. Popular events that attract thousands of visitors to the Windy City and offer a unique aerial advertising opportunity include:
- Taste of Chicago: This 5-day event is not only the world’s largest food festival but also the largest festival in Chicago! Each year, hundreds of thousands flock to Grant Park to experience food, live music, performances and shop local vendors.
- Chicago Pride Parade: Chicago’s Pride month is a celebration of festivities and events, culminating with the annual Chicago Pride Parade, which traditionally takes place the last Sunday of June.
- Music Festivals: Chicago is home to some of the most celebrated music festivals in the country. Lollapalooza is an annual attraction that brings people to Grant Park every year. For other music-rich audiences, Chicago is also home to Riot Fest, Chicago Blues Festival, and Pitchfork Music Festival, to name a few.
- Cubs and Bears season! Whether you’re from North or South of The Loop, stadiums and sporting events provide access to a captivated audience. On game days, Wrigley Stadium and Soldier field seat over 100,000 eager sports fans.
While Florida boasts some of the most popular beaches in the U.S., there are countless other opportunities to make waves with breakthrough aerial advertising. These events offer opportunities to get your message seen by millions.
- Spring Break: Spring break brings millions of Gen Z partygoers to Miami, Fort Lauderdale and Tampa each year. It’s a great opportunity to focus your marketing on this young, hip and digitally savvy audience.
Miami and Fort Lauderdale:
- Art Basel Miami Beach: For more than 20 years, this celebrated global art experience has grown to include more than 80,000 visitors — nearly as large as the population of Miami Beach!
- Music lovers flock to the Ultra Music Festival (March) in downtown Miami, the world’s premier outdoor electronic music festival which welcomes 150,000+ attendees from around the country. And the Tortuga Music Festival (mid-April) in Fort Lauderdale Beach, which features major music headliners across genres.
- Miami Beach Pride: Celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, this multi-day free festival and parade brings together thousands of visitors to celebrate Miami’s vibrant and diverse LGBTQ+ community.
- South Beach Wine & Food Festival: This extravagant food and wine festival brings out tons of celebrity chefs and foodies for exciting showcases all over Miami and Fort Lauderdale.
- Fort Lauderdale International Boat Show: From super-yachts to inflatables, more than $4 billion worth of boats will be on display during the show which takes place in six locations connected by shuttles, water taxis, and riverboats.
- Gasparilla: You have to see it to believe it – a mock sea battle and reenactment of Tampa’s historic pirate invasion is followed by a Mardi Gra-like parade each year.
- Florida State Fair: Boasting “the largest midway in the USA,” the state fair showcases Florida’s agriculture and history for the estimated 1.5 million visitors throughout the year.
- Innings Festival: There’s nothing better than music and baseball – and Innings Fest celebrates both. Attendees come to Raymond James Stadium Grounds in Tampa to celebrate the Grapefruit League Spring Training Experience and enjoy rock, pop, and alternative artists on 3 stages.
- Bike Week: Arguably one of the most popular motorcycle rallies in the U.S., approximately 500,000 people make their way to Daytona for the 10-day event. Bike Week festivities include motorcycle racing, concerts, parties, and street festivals.
- Daytona 500 NASCAR race: Many consider the Daytona 500 “The Super Bowl of NASCAR.” This is one of the biggest events to come to Florida all year longn attracting racing fans from around the globe to Daytona for a huge celebration of their favorite drivers and racing teams.
- Welcome to Rockville: Daytona International Speedway isn’t just for racing – in May, America’s largest rock festival returns, offering guests a weekend long experience of camping out and rock n’ roll.
NEW YORK CITY and NEW JERSEY:
Combined, NYC and the surrounding NJ neighborhoods are a hub for business, tourism, and conventions, making it an ideal market for aerial advertising. The city’s diverse population, iconic landmarks, and constant stream of visitors make it an ideal place to showcase aerial billboards and skytyping campaigns and reach a wide variety of audiences. Some of the most sought-after aerial billboard destinations:
- Did someone say beaches? Some of the most frequent requests our specially-trained pilots receive is to fly aerial billboards along the celebrated beaches of The Hamptons, Jones beach, and the Jersey Shore – where all summer long, millions flock for vacation and relaxation.
- MetLife Stadium: Located in East Rutherford, NJ, this coveted stadium is home to the New York Jets and New York Giants football teams. It is one of the largest stadiums in the NFL with a capacity of 82,500.
- Hudson River: Separating NYC and NJ, the Hudson River region has seen an economic revitalization. From the High Line in Chelsea to the Walkway Over the Hudson in Poughkeepsie, the river boasts numerous waterfront parks and festivals.
- New York Comic Con: First held in 2006, this annual New York City convention attracts 180,000 fans and costumed cosplayers dedicated to Western comics, graphic novels, anime, manga, video games, cosplay, toys, movies, and television.
LOS ANGELES and SAN DIEGO:
Los Angeles, the second-largest city in the US, and San Diego are both ideal for promoting brands and products because of their sunny climates and beautiful beaches. In addition, San Diego’s large military presence and numerous tourist attractions provide additional opportunities for advertisers in the sky.
- And the award goes to… Throughout the year, LA is home to the largest awards celebrations in TV, film, and music. Grammy Awards, Academy Awards, Emmy Awards all take place in theaters across LA and Hollywood, making it a destination for celebrities and tens of thousands of onlookers.
- LA Pride: The L.A. Pride Festival is a weekend-long celebration including parties and events across the city, culminating in the LA Pride Parade which saw 125,000 cheering attendees in 2022.
- Los Angeles County Fair: This May the “largest county fair in the nation” will welcome thousands of ride-obsessed, treat-loving, quilt-admiring, pig-petting, and concert-cheering visitors.
- Farmers Insurance Open: The annual PGA Tour Farmers Insurance Open men’s golf tournament is played at the Torrey Pines Golf Course in La Jolla, home of the 2008 & 2021 U.S. Open.
- Del Mar Racing Season: San Diego horse racing takes place where the “turf meets the surf” at the Del Mar Racetrack when fans flock to the track to wager on their favorite horses.
- San Diego Comic-Con International: Comic-Con is the largest comics and pop culture event in the U.S., attracting thousands of artists, celebrities and fans of comic books, movie memorabilia and all things related to pop culture.
- Wonderfront Music & Arts Festival: A highly-anticipated 7+ stage, 95+ bands, 3-day music, culinary and arts festival will descend upon the stunning waterfront of downtown San Diego from Broadway Pier to the Embarcadero Parks. The festival offers diverse attractions including yacht parties, water sports, art installations, after-parties, a craft beer village and plenty of local flavors.
- Music festivals like Rolling Loud California in March (the world’s largest hip-hop festival), and Coachella and Stagecoach (a.k.a. “California’s Country Music Festival”) which take place in April in Indio, CA.
- US Open of Surfing: a week-long surfing competition held annually during the summer in Huntington Beach, California. The Open is part of the qualification process for the World Surf League and is a WSL QS 10,000 event.
- AVP Tour: The 2023 Association of Volleyball Professionals (AVP) tour schedule will include 12 events being held around the country, beginning in March and ending in October.
The hot and sunny climate of Phoenix makes it an ideal location for promoting events and products, particularly those related to outdoor activities and recreation.
- Chase Field: Looking to catch the attention of sports fans in Phoenix? Chase Field is home to the Arizona Diamondbacks during the season when fans flock to enjoy the iconic sounds of cracking bats, snapping mitts, and happy fans. And the 2023 Guaranteed Rate Bowl, NCAA bowl season’s only matchup between contenders in the Big 12 and Big Ten conferences.
- Don’t feel left out golf fans, the Waste Management Phoenix Open draws the largest crowds on the PGA Tour and has gained legendary status for its fan experience.
- Music Festivals: Innings Festival (March), M3F Music Festival (March) and Country Thunder Music Festival (October).
- NASCAR Championship Weekend: The NASCAR Cup Series Championship at Phoenix Raceway is nonstop action featuring on-track access, Midway festivities, and camping parties.
- Phoenix Pride: a two-day celebration of the LGBTQ+ community, bringing members, friends, families, and allies together for a weekend of camaraderie, featuring entertainment, music and performances, food, shopping, and community resources.
Overall, the most popular markets for aerial advertising in the United States are cities with a high demand for tourism, conventions, and events. These markets offer a diverse and highly visible audience, making them ideal for companies looking to reach a wide range of consumers.
Van Wagner has the largest fleet of aerial advertising planes in the nation. Our team is strategically positioned in major beach and metropolitan areas so we can customize your campaign to target nearly any part of the U.S..