Today the FBI has launched an electronic billboard in Times Square which will share with the world the FBI's Most Wanted. The effort was originally launched with 100 billboards in 23 cities across the country. Working with Clear Channel Outdoor, the agency now has access to 1,500 billboards in 40 states. The FBI has used billboards to catch criminals since 2007 and reports 30 cases have been solved as a result of publicizing fugitives.
A recently granted patent has given Google the ability to sell ad space on billboards through its Street View map product. Rather than a Street View user seeing the actual billboard image - in many cases months old - captured by the Google Street View vehicle, the person would see a digitally placed image purchased through the new system.
The patent explains how advertisers can replace their old images with digitally created new ones. It also describes a bidding system which could possibly allow for an advertiser who isn't using the board in real life to buy and apply a digital billboard over the advertiser who is using it in real life.
Those Obamas are everywhere. Whether they like it or not. This time around, it's the President, himself, appearing, without consent, on a Times Square billboard for the garment company Weatherproof. It's an image of the President wearing one of the company's coats when he was standing on the Great Wall of China.
Weatherproof President Freddie Stollmack, who recognized the coat, told the New York Times, "With a magnifying glass, we saw our logo and zipper pull, and we said, 'That's our coat,'"
The image was properly licensed from the Associated Press but Weatherproof failed to obtain necessary permissions from The White House, which has a policy against using the President's image for commercial purposes, for use of the President's image.
If you're happy and you know it clap your hands. If you're fat and you know it, slap an alien...because they are going to eat you first according to this latest cause-tagonistic ad from UK fitness center Cadbury House which states, "Advanced Health Warning: When the aliens come, they will eat the fatties first."
Apparently this ad, which was lifted almost verbatim from a 1999 Grey-created 24 Hour Fitness billboard, has the English up in arms. One women complained, saying, "I am not overweight yet I still find this extremely offensive and patronizing, but how much more so to someone genuinely overweight?"
Now here's a store you don't expect to see at the mall. Like a steamroller crushing old-school Salvation Army bell ringers, The Red Cross has popped up a store in an upscale shopping center in Madrid. Created by Leo Burnett Madrid, the store contains pseudo books that contain bookmarks that remind people their contributions help make the story a happy one.
Many Spanish celebrities from Real Madrid's Álvaro Arbeloa and Ruben de la Red to gymnast Rafa Martinez to actor Miguel Hermoso showed up for the store opening. The store took in record breaking donations over its first weekend. It'll be up through the month of December.
Ski areas love to tout their snowfall. So why not employ some bathroom humor double entendre rather than the usual "we get tons of snow" boredom that usually passes for ski area advertising. From LA-based David&Goliath comes this outdoor campaign for Mammoth Mountain.
Using digital billboards and weather widget on the mountain's website, snowfall amounts are posted to the billboard in real-ish time. The euphemism for these updates are Dump Alerts.
"Is it about a spiritual male God sending down sperm so a child would be born, or is it about the power of love in our midst as seen in Jesus?" That's what Auckland's St Matthew-in-the-City Church Vicar Archdeacon Glynn Cardy told the New Zealand Press Association in response to complaints about a billboard the church erected.
The board, which shows Joseph laying in bed with Mary along with the caption, "Poor Joseph. God was a hard act to follow," has been labeled "inappropriate" and "disrespectful" by the Catholic Church and others.
Supporting the rationale behind the board, Cardy said, "What we're trying to do is to get people to think more about what Christmas is all about." While he claims there were supporters of the creative direction, the board was defaced by detractors shortly after it went up.
Speaking for the opposition, Auckland Catholic Diocese Spokeswoman Lyndsay Freer said, "Our Christian tradition of 2,000 years is that Mary remains a virgin and that Jesus is the son of God, not Joseph. Such a poster is inappropriate and disrespectful."
Blasphemy or call to challenge stereotype?
So you're laying on the beach enjoying yourself and suddenly you hear this. Do you really want to be reminded that all you're doing is increasing your chances of getting skin cancer? Well that's the goal of this creation from Sydney-based Three Drunk Monkeys which worked with singer/songwriter Ben Lee to create a five second message to be played at area beaches. Twenty different messages were created. Here's one.
"The campaign features three 30-second television spots that use the element of surprise to build excitement for the new Minnesota Millionaire Raffle game Each spot features a game-show-like host who wheels a large raffle drum into busy locales where unsuspecting patrons are encouraged to play an instant raffle. The spots are built on genuine reactions as people go from shocked and reluctant to actively participating and cheering"
Now that's some well-written PR copy. And we didn't have to go digging through a collection of attachments or ridiculously worded releases to find the nugget of information. Thank you, Colle+McVoy.
Now on to the campaign. Generally, we're not a fan of marketing stunts that involve random appearances in unlikely places. After all, if we're shopping, we're shopping. If we're eating, we're eating. Then again, you can't do stunt marketing (or most any kind for that matter...yes, we love you inbound marketing) without a little bit of interruption. So we can't complain much about this campaign.
The campaign also includes print, radio, outdoor, transit and mall. You can view the three spots here, here and here.
Maybe the guy who went to all that trouble (worth watching every year) to decorate his house with Christmas trees and then computer-programmed them to synchronize with Trans-Siberian Orchestra's "Wizards in Winter" might just be interested in the new 3D laser projection technology currently in use by Publicum Media for Sony Ericsson. It'd sure be easier than stringing 25,000 lights all over the exterior of his house.
Publicum created a seven minute 3D projection called When Fairy Tales Come True which was shown to an audience of 10,000 at the Vilnius City Town Hall in Lithuania. It's purpose, other than to entertain, was to promote the Sony Ericsson smartphone Satio and Aino.