Top 5 Places to Advertise in Chicago

by Lalithaa

It’s easy to get blown over when trying to get a marketing foothold in the Windy City. When advertising in Chicago, billboards and other signage only count as one way to make an impact. To make your mark in the biggest metropolitan area in Illinois, you need more than a cool catchphrase. Here are five ways to build your brand without getting caught in a windstorm of advertising!

#1. Highways and Byways

Chicago is a busy city, and with all of those cars and buses on the roads, there are plenty of captive eyes just looking for a distraction. Chicago billboards are a great way for your marketing team to take advantage of all those commuters and pedestrians that inhabit any major city. Not only will your ads be seen by poor souls locked in rush-hour traffic, but such large signage can easily be seen by anyone that glances their way.


Using billboards in the city center is another excellent opportunity to build your brand. People walk, bike, and drive by those signs every day, seeing them so often that they become part of the skyline. Seeing an ad every day makes it part of the routine, and constant recognition means potential customers will recognize that branding long after they’ve gotten off the streets.

#2. Social Media

Another great place to advertise in Chicago is on social media. Tapping into trending hashtags will help make your company part of the conversation, generating interest in your brand with every post. From Facebook to TikTok, there are many ways you can leverage a social media presence to generate more brand awareness. Some ideas for using these technologies include:


  • Instagram shots of your latest Chicago billboards
  • A Facebook page devoted to your business
  • TikTok videos announcing upcoming sales
  • Twitter posts to engage customer conversation
  • How-to and instructional guides on YouTube


Providing content on social media gives your customers the chance to directly interact with your brand. Having access to constant updates also helps them feel like an insider.

#3. Establish Local Connections

One of the best ways to get a foothold in any city is to partner with local businesses and institutions. These are places that already have an established reputation in the community, and acquiring their help acts as a shortcut to getting into prospective customers’ good graces. This lets you advertise on the community level, giving you the chance to merge your branding with the Chicago story directly.


Of course, you can’t make an impact if you don’t know the lingo. Just like other cities around the United States, Chicago natives have their own vernacular that can help make it easier to connect with the populace. If you want to take your message from Six Corners all the way to The Wild Hundreds, it pays to know what you’re talking about!

#4. Tapping Into Influencers

It’s not just local businesses that can give you the inside scoop on the Windy City. A sign with your branding may get some attention, but a local icon on a Chicago billboard will garner much more notice. Getting in touch with members of the digital community can get your message out to more people than standard marketing ever could. 


Partnering with influences can be a double-edged sword. Since they aren’t directly paid by the business, you’ll have little control over what they actually say and do. However, this can be a benefit as many people see paid advertising as going against the genuine nature consumers follow those influencers for. As such, working with someone who already has the ear of the community can help add validity to your brand.

#5. Sports Venues

If there’s one thing that Chicago loves, it’s sports. With seasonal events occurring all year round, the Illinois populace has quite a few teams to back. Local sports include baseball, basketball, football, and even men’s and women’s soccer. Bringing your brand to the game is a great way to get noticed by the competitive community, and associating your company with the home team means recognition during every sporting event.


Don’t just limit your options to the stadiums that house these events. Look to local businesses that thrive on sports as their bread and butter, too. Advertising in the local sports bar can help to connect your brand with the regularity of weekly games or use the popularity of Monday Night Football to boost sales and make conversions.

Marketing in Chicago that Makes Sense

Chicago is a friendly city with a close-knit community, Making headway in those demographics is challenging, but knowing where to put your marketing dollars will help make a big impact. By getting your advertising out to the right places, it’s a sure bet your message won’t end up as just another voice on the wind!

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