Over Regulation Can kill Nigeria’s Outdoor Advertising Industry


To state that creativity is the life-wire of advertising regardless of its form, is to state the obvious. Creativity is the catalyst that fuels advertising and keeps it alive. However, creativity can only thrive in an atmosphere void of limitations and barriers. As important as creativity is in advertising, particularly outdoor advertising, there is no doubt that it can be stifled by various limitations under the guise of regulations or laws.

The outdoor advertising industry in Nigeria is under serious threat and faces the risk of collapsing before our very eyes. In a statement made by the President of APCON Mr. Lolu Akinwunmi, 70% of advertisers have withdrawn from the use of outdoor advertising due to its numerous regulations and multiple taxations. This statement seems ironic considering the fact that this same regulatory body and other similar bodies are partly responsible for this situation, as they are in position to make the outdoor advertising industry in Nigeria conducive for advertisers and business owners.

The president of Outdoor Advertising Association Nigeria (OAAN), Mr Charles Chijide stated that lots of businesses have suffered and died as a result of the hostile nature of the outdoor industry in which they operate. This is very harmful to an industry that is still growing and struggling to survive amidst challenges posed by the nation’s economy and other competitive media such as Radio, Television and the growing online advertisement.

In 2012, the Advertising Practitioners Council of Nigeria (APCON) during a forum held to discuss the irregularities and issues facing the outdoor industry, made a commitment to modify the existing laws in the industry and enact new laws that will be beneficial for all stakeholders within the industry. Two years later, we still see various acts of misconduct and unnecessary taxation still prevailing in the advertising sector. Street Urchins (touts) still go about collecting money from billboard operators and nothing is done about it. Excess taxation and regulation from regulatory bodies and the government still hamper the successful growth of outdoor advertising in Nigeria.

These regulatory bodies as well as the government seem to be so focused on what they stand to gain from board operators without seeing the negative effect it is having on the growth of outdoor advertising in Nigeria. When compared to foreign counterparts, we are lagging behind in Out-Of-Home (OOH) advertising in terms of creativity and technological advancement. Excessive regulation has dampened the spirit of many advertisers and business owners, preventing them from exploring the endless possibilities and potentials inherent in outdoor advertising industry.

The efficacy of outdoor advertising in bringing about a growth in the nation’s economy cannot be over-emphasized. This truth has been grasped by advanced countries with obvious results in their economic GDP. My previous post illustrates ways in which outdoor advertising can bring in more revenue to a nation’s economy by boosting sales of products and services.

VacantBoards as a company is committed to revolutionizing outdoor advertising in Nigeria by encouraging positive change, creativity and development within the sector.  To achieve this, we have made outdoor advertising easier by bringing it closer to your doorstep. With just a click, you can now book your outdoor advert spaces seamlessly and on-the-go while skipping the bureaucracy involved. You also enjoy the added benefit of having your advertisements monitored and tracked along with advertisement campaign analytics.

At VacantBoards, we are committed to helping you grow your business one board at a time. Visit our Facebook page or Twitter handle for more interesting news, insights and trends about the advertising industry.

So let’s get our imaginations soaring, unlock our creative minds and  transform the Nigerian outdoor advertising industry.