Innovation in Advertising: Part 1
Looking at recent and successful advertising campaigns, one of the most memorable aspects is the use of pioneering technology, and its role in involving the audience. At the heart of today’s innovative ad campaigns, lies engaging content that’s brought to life through new uses and applications of technology. Here is a selection of some of the most interesting campaigns of 2012 so far, spanning the broad realms of guerilla advertising, viral marketing, and augmented reality.
In this digital age, there seems to be increasing value and novelty around using technology to physically connect with consumers, literally in every sense! Both McCain and Mr Kipling have invested in what can only be described as ‘smell-vertising’. To promote their Ready Bake Jackets, McCain worked with Beattie McGuinness Bungay to transform bus shelters into potato havens; emitting the aroma of freshly baked potatoes and dispensing money-off vouchers. A whole new meaning to ‘try before you buy’!
Similarly, Mr Kipling collaborated with London agency 101 to unveil a series of bus shelters and poster sites that dispensed free cake, as well as emitting the scent of Angel Slices. Despite being an125 year old brand, Coca-Cola remain at the forefront of innovative forms of ‘physical’ advertising, and were awarded Marketer of the Year by AdAge in 2011. With the intention of getting customers to forge an emotional connection to the brand, they invested in a hug-machine- a vending machine which dispenses cans of coke in exchange for a hug rather than money.
With the growing popularity and dependence on smartphones and tablets (apparently there are more smartphones in the world than toothbrushes!), it’s only natural that agencies are taking their mobile strategies to a whole new level. Smile Machine were lucky enough to visit and join the developer network of Aurasma; the AR start up that’s quite literally enlivening the world of brand awareness. To give an example, Aurasma recently teamed up with Universal as part of the film studios 100th anniversary celebrations, to develop an app that makes movie characters appear and interact with London tourist attractions. Once you have downloaded the app, you can see King Kong leap around Nelsons Column, and Tyrnnosaurus rex from Jurrasic Park head towards Buckingham Palace. Randel Bryan, digital marketing manager at Universal Pictures UK, commented on the value of using mobile as a core platform within the campaign, to interact and excite consumers on a more personal and one-to-one level: ‘We wanted to produce something truly exciting that film fans would want to cherish and collect, and we feel that the Aurasma-enabled augmented reality sleeves have achieved this, by bringing the magic of our movies into the palms of their hands.’
Taking the idea of portable AR interactivity to the next level, Google recently unveiled an intriguing project entitled ‘Project Glass’; a pair of augmented reality glasses that allow you to interact with what you can see. The glasses act as a smartphone, camera, and navigation system all in one. I can only imagine the opportunity this provides for marketers to dream up highly targeted ad placements, which pop up as the user walks from shop to shop and browses different items.
Internet memes ad viral ads are a brilliant way of reaching a huge audience very quickly, as well as being intrinsically fun and shareable (if done correctly!) In February 2012, McDonalds carried out one of the cleverest and most effective viral campaigns I’ve come across. They designed a seed bomb in the shape of the iconic golden arches, made out of Californian Poppies- which are against the law to dig up in California! Good for the environment, illegal to remove and cheap and easy to implement.
Ok so that example was entirely non-digital – except from the resultant sharing and blogging online- but a great proof of concept for future eco-advertising. If you’d like to keep up-to-date with the viral videos (including a section purely for the UK ad industry), you can see the latest trending memes via the Unruly Media Viral Video Chart. Also highly recommended is Kitten Camp, London’s premier meme meet up.
We’re really interested in innovative advertising at Smile Machine, and if you have any case studies or interesting projects for us to feature in our blog, or if you need a mobile partner, let us know!