The largest standardized poster format measuring 12’3″ x 24’6″ in overall size with a bleed copy area of 10’5″ x 22’8″.

Junior Poster

A standardized poster format measuring 6′ x 12′ in overall size with a bleed copy area of 5′ x 11′.


The number of units required to achieve a desired GRP level in a market. Traditional poster panel showings consist of illuminated and unilluminated displays that will vary by market size and population.


The distance measured along the line of travel from the point where an advertising unit first becomes fully visible to the point where the copy is no longer readable.


The certification of traffic circulation. The TAB is an independent auditing bureau responsible for verifying traffic circulation in a market.

Billboard or Board

Large format advertising displays intended for viewing from extended distances, generally more than 50 feet. Billboard displays are: posters, junior posters, vinyl-wrapped posters, bulletins, wall murals and stadium signage.


Poster copy that extends to the edge of a poster panel frame on all sides.


A standardized outdoor format commonly measuring 14′ x 48′ in overall size. Either sold as permanent displays or in rotary packages. Bulletin copy can be rendered using hand painting techniques, computer production or printing on paper.

Cancellation Period

A specified period of time when a contract can be terminated. Common to all media.

Charting a Showing

The process of selecting individual unit locations to maximize out-of-home advertising objectives.


Traffic volume in a market.


The sharing of advertising costs between a manufacturer and distributor or dealer. Common to all media.

Code of Industry Principals

A set of voluntary principles, prescribed by the OAAA, that pledges a commitment by its members to operate in the public interest.


The elimination of gaps in a media schedule by maximizing the duration of a campaign, ideally 52 weeks.


Artwork displayed on an out-of-home unit.

Copy Area

The viewing area on an out-of-home unit.


The boundaries of a market. The term also refers to the percentage of a county or counties exposed to out-of-home advertising.


Cost per thousand. The term refers to the cost of reaching one thousand advertising exposure opportunities in a market. Common to all media.


Cost per point. The term refers to the cost of exposure opportunities that equal one gross rating point in a market or one percent of the population. Common to all media.

Creative Brief

Detailed marketing objectives that pertain to the design of an out-of-home campaign. Common to all media.


Daily Effective Circulation. The term refers to the audited audience of potential viewers who have the opportunity to see an out-of-home message during a 24 hour period.

Display Period

The interval of exposure when an out-of-home advertising campaign is viewed.


The strategic scattering of out-of-home units across a market.


Letters, figures, mechanical devices or lighting that is attached to the face of an out-of-home unit to create special effects.


Seeing an advertising message. Common to all media.


The addition of copy outside the restraints of a bulletin or Premiere Panel face. Sometimes referred to as cut-outs.


The surface area on an out-of-home unit where advertising copy is displayed. A unit may have more than one face.


The cardinal direction that an out-of-home unit faces. As an example, a north facing bulletin would be viewed by vehicles traveling south.


A tear that causes poster paper to hang loose from a bulletin or poster panel face.

Flexible Face

Single-sheet vinyl used in computer painting.

Foster and Kleiser

Founded in 1901, Foster and Kleiser Advertising Company established most of the standards used by the modern out-of-home industry.


The average number of times that an individual is exposed to an advertising message during a specified period of time. Out-of-home frequency is normally measured over four week periods. Common to all media.


Gross Rating Point. The term refers to the total number of impressions delivered by a media schedule expressed as a percentage of a market population. Common to all media. In out-of-home a GRP level is sometimes referred to as a showing, and is measured on a daily basis.

Hand Paint

The rendering of copy onto an out-of-home face using paints and brushes.

Highway Beautification Act of 1965

Federal legislation sometimes referred to as the Lady Bird Johnson Act. The act was signed into law by President Lyndon B. Johnson and mandates state controls regarding out-of-home media on interstate highways.

Illuminated Unit

An out-of-home unit equipped with lighting that provides nighttime illumination of an advertising message, usually from dusk until midnight.


The total number of impression opportunities an out-of-home unit can produce measured against a target audience in a market. Cumulative impressions can be combined to reflect an entire out-of-home campaign.


The side of a highway or street on which an out-of-home unit is positioned.

Line of Sight

The simultaneous viewing of more than one out-of-home unit.

Mobile Billboard™

A truck that is equipped with one or more poster panel units. The trucks can either be parked at specified venues or driven around designated localities.


Outdoor Advertising Association of America. The term refers to a national trade association representing out-of-home companies, suppliers and affiliates.

Obie Award

An annual award that recognizes creative excellence in out-of-home. The Obie Award program is administered by the OAAA.

Off-Premise Sign

A sign that advertises products or services that are not sold, produced, manufactured or furnished on the property where the sign is located. An out-of-home unit is an off-premise sign.

On-Premise Sign

A sign that advertises products or services that are sold, produced, manufactured or furnished on the property where the sign is located.


All advertising signage found outside the home, including bulletins and posters.


Bulletins and Posters. Also referred to as traditional outdoor.

Permanent Bulletin

A bulletin that remains permanently located at a specified site throughout the term of a contract, usually for long periods. A permanent bulletin program can build strong brand recognition in specific market areas.


All the out-of-home advertising units in a market that are operated by a single company. Sometimes the term refers to the out-of-home company itself.


An out-of-home unit with a slatted face that allows three different copy messages to revolve at intermittent intervals. Sometimes referred to as a Tri-vision.

Poster Panel

An outdoor unit that can accommodate poster and junior poster displays.

Posting Date

The date when a poster program is scheduled to commence. A five day leeway is customary. AOA posting dates are every Monday, except holidays.

Posting Instructions

Detailed marketing objectives provided to an out-of-home company by an advertiser or agency. The information is used to chart a showing with the greatest efficiency in reaching a desired target audience.

Premiere Panel©

A standardized display format measuring 12’3″ x 24’6″ in overall size. Premiere Panel units offer the impact of a bulletin by utilizing a single-sheet vinyl face stretched over a standard Poster panel. The target specific market segments. An innovation developed by Eller Media Company.

Premiere Square©

A standardized display format measuring 25’5″ x 24’6″ in overall size. The Premiere Square offers spectacular impact by utilizing a single-sheet vinyl face stretched over two stacked posters. In some markets, this same technique can be applied to a stacked Junior Poster measuring 12’6″ x 12’1″ in overall size. An innovation developed by Eller Media Company.


The process of rendering artwork digitally onto a single-sheet vinyl display surface.

Proof of Performance

Certification by an out-of-home company that contracted advertising services have been rendered.


Nearness in time and space to a purchase decision.


The percent of a target audience exposed to an advertising message at least once during a specified period of time. Reach is normally measured over four week periods. Common to all media.

Riding the Showing

The physical inspection of the units that comprise an out-of-home program in a market.

Rotary Bulletin

A standardized 14′ x 48′ bulletin that is moved to different locations in a market at fixed intervals, usually every 60 or 90 days. A rotary bulletin program can provide balanced reach in a market.

Shipping Instructions

Information provided to printers for shipping posters and single-sheet vinyl to out-of-home companies. Shipping instructions should include a description of the design(s), full snipe text (if applicable), the number of units shipped, and the contact with full address of each location where the materials are being shipped.



The total number of units in a contracted out-of-home advertising program. A showing represents the approximate number of daily GRPs delivered by a predetermined number of units. Common showing sizes are #100, #50 and #25. For example, a #50 showing represents the number of units required to deliver daily impressions equal to half the population of a market. The showing size does not represent the actual number of units in a program.


A structure used to display information regarding a product or service. An out-of-home unit is a sign.


An adhesive strip that is used to change a portion of copy displayed on an out-of-home unit.

Space Rate

The dollar value associated with the contracting of advertising space for an individual billboard “face”. The rate is based on the contracted time period an advertiser wishes to secure the space for which may or may not include other costs (production, embellishments, installation, etc).


A bulletin that is usually larger than 14′ x 48′ and is positioned at prime locations in a market. A spectacular often utilizes special embellishments.

Spotted Map

A map indicating all locations included in a specific out-of-home program. Also referred to as a location map.

Standardized Unit

Out-of-home units constructed in accordance with the specifications established by the OAAA.

Street Furniture

Advertising displays, many that provide a public amenity, positioned at close proximity to pedestrians and shoppers for eye-level viewing, or at curbside to influence vehicular traffic. Street furniture displays include: transit shelters, newstands/newsracks, kiosks, shopping mall panels, convenience store panels and in-store signage.

Surface Arterials

Major streets in towns or cities that carry a heavy flow of vehicular traffic.

Target Audience

A consumer group selected by an advertiser. Common to all media.

Traffic Audit

The third party verification of traffic circulation in a market. Traffic audit information is used to calculate out-of-home DEC figures.

Traffic Count

The number of vehicles that pass an out-of-home unit each day. Traffic counts are used to calculate DEC figures.


Advertising displays affixed to moving vehicles or in the common areas of transit terminals, stations and airports. Transit displays include: bus panels, taxi panels, and mobile advertising signage (e.g., trucks).

Transit Poster (Bus)

Posters attached to the exterior of buses. Common displays are king panels measuring 30″ x 144″ in overall size with a bleed copy area of 29″ x 144″, queen panels measuring 30″ x 88″ in overall size with a bleed copy area of 29″ x 88″, and side panel measuring 21″ x 70″ in overall size with the same bleed copy area.

Transit Poster (Commuter Rail)

Posters displayed in commuter rail stations and on trains.

Transit Shelter

A curbside structure located at regular stopping points along urban bus routes. Backlit posters are affixed to transit shelter structures using a standardized display format measuring 69″ x 48″ in overall size with a bleed copy area of 67″ x 46″.


Omnipresent. Everywhere at the same time.

Unilluminated Unit

An out-of-home unit that has not been equipped with lighting for nighttime illumination of an advertising message. The DEC for an unilluminated units calculated using a 12 hour viewing period. Sometimes referred to as a regular unit.


A single-sheet substrate on which an advertising messages is rendered by either computer production or hand painting. Vinyl is primarily used on the face of bulletins and Premiere products.


Murals painted or attached directly onto the exterior surface of a building.