In a marketing campaign created by Y&R, Sao Paolo, Brazil. Ironage, an isotonic sports drink made in Brazil, targeted athletes who constantly strive to exceed their own personal best. In addition to print ads featuring athletes, Y&R promoted the brand strategically in places where customers were most likely to congregate – namely, gyms, parks, and health clubs. There, they introduced vending machines, dubbed “Pulse Machines.” Consistent with the brand’s slogan “Keep Moving,” the machines read the customer’s heart rate with each use. The higher their heart rate, the bigger their discount on a bottle of Ironage. The Pulse Machine challenged the competitive spirit of these athletes and turned them into word-of-mouth promoters of the brand as they compared their pulse readings.
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In January 2007, Sao Paolo, Brazil, did something that would send chills down the spine of most ad agencies. In an effort to rid the city of what the mayor called “visual pollution,” Sao Paolo enacted a Clean City law that banned all billboards and most other large outdoor advertising.
Known as one of the world’s worst billboard jungles, Sao Paolo was rife with illegal billboards and signs. Advertisers had bought up virtually all available street and wall space in the city to hang their gigantic marketing messages. To earn money, some poor residents even sold the front of their homes or space in their gardens to post ad signs. Unable to determine which were legal and which not, the city banned them all.
Since the law went into effect more than 15,000 billboards, 1,600 oversized signs and 1,300 metal ad panels have come down. Strict regulations mandated smaller storefront signage and limited them to hang only above the store entrance and not extend into the street. Even pamphleteering in public spaces was made illegal. Those who didn’t comply faced hefty fines.
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From Almap BBDO in Sao Paolo, Brazil, comes these outdoor poster advertisements for Bayer Aspirin. The inspiration of Almap chief creative director Marcello Serpa, art director Marcos Medeiros and illustrator Jose Cortizo Junior, these lushly drawn “Sanskrit” paintings feature a silhouetted man and woman in the traditional meditative lotus pose, with an aspirin used in place of a mystical “third eye” of calm. Outside the inner circle of serenity are vignette scenes of stress – warring kids pulling apart a teddy bear, a teenager banging on his drum set, a dentist by his empty chair, a worker using a jackhammer, a man rubbing his aching neck. The ad won the 2009 Cannes Lion Bronze for Outdoor advertising. Ohm shanti ohm. May you find peace in a chaotic world.