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July 16, 2021

The 90’s called, they want their pylons back

Pylons are freestanding promotional structures that are generally located outside of commercial properties. While these signs come in a range of shapes and sizes, they all serve a very similar purpose – provide effective exposure to passing traffic.

While pylons were once strictly static signs, they have evolved in line with the rapid adoption of technology. Nowadays, LED pylons are often preferred due to their comparative superiority in several key areas. With this being said, even in this day and age, digital signage is not right for everyone. This article will compare LED and static pylons according to 4 key criterions in order to help you decide which option best suits your business.


The ultimate objective of a pylon is to attract customers as well as improve overall engagement. Perhaps predictably, digital pylons are much more effective at doing this. Research suggests that LED based signage is much more likely to leave a lasting impression on viewers. In fact, a practical study found that 83% of people were able to accurately recall information from at least one digital sign that they had seen in the past month. On the other hand, roughly 40% of respondents retained information that they had seen on a static sign.

In an attempt to explain the major discrepancies between the aforementioned statistics, it is important to understand the profound effect that visual aesthetics have on human emotions. People are drawn to visually pleasing promotional material, and a simple, high quality LED pylon is significantly more appealing than a more traditional piece of signage.


Maintenance costs should be an important consideration for any prospective signage owner. Perhaps surprisingly, research suggests that LED pylons are comparatively superior in this category. This is primarily due to the reliability of LED technology – in this day and age, outdoor LED pylons are exceptionally durable, and can last 10-15 years. With the technology being very self-sufficient, maintenance does not typically extend beyond standard cleaning. Conversely, static pylons often fall victim to a range of environmental factors and are therefore prone to deterioration over a period of time.


Perhaps the most prominent advantage of LED pylons stems from the fact that they are remarkably flexible. Through a few clicks, businesses can effortlessly alter the images, text and infographics that are shown on their pylon. As a result of this adaptability, digital signage is very effective in helping a business communicate any sort of change.

On the other hand, static pylons displays are exceptionally inflexible, and usually cannot be changed once they are completed. As a result of this, they can become worthless for companies that undergo any sort of re-branding process.


For the vast majority of businesses, costs are the defining factor. While established global entities may be able to splash large sums of cash on extravagant signage, the reality is very different for an average small-medium sized start-up. While prices obviously vary, research suggests that as a general rule, digital pylons are roughly twice as expensive when being compared to a static pylon of the same size.

While LED pylons may seem overly expensive, the initial investment often fails to tell the full story. When effectively implemented, digital signage has been shown to have a positive effect on brand awareness and recognition as well as customer engagement. Therefore, it is likely that the ROI on an LED pylon would exceed that of a static pylon.

The bottom line

Pylons are an exceptional resource that can provide a multitude of benefits to businesses of all sizes. While this article has shown that LED pylons may be superior in this day and age, it is important to recognise that they are not appropriate for all businesses. Namely, a small or rural business that is looking to capture a localised market may feel as though a static pylon is more suited to them.



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