On a barcode in the Shanghai sky or on a random billboard we see at the side of the road, embedded in game apps, or on top of the escalator at the mall – big companies are constantly looking for the best ways to capture consumers attention.
In recent years, major networks such as Facebook, Google, and LinkedIn have faced unexpected competition. Although billboards are not, by all means, a new phenomenon – they recently reinvented themselves.
How do you think you’d react if you came across a barcode the size of a building while walking down the street? Wouldn’t you stop and scan it? This is exactly the kind of creativity we see in the advertising field during the past couple of years, and it does not have any limits. Here are some examples that will inspire you.
Billboards – But on mobile
An Israeli start-up company has come to understand that hybridity is the most relevant model in the new world we live in. Sayollo is currently developing a product called gComm that connects commerce and the gaming world and merges them into an integrated creature. The product takes advantage of the endless hours people spend on mobile games (current studies indicate an incredible average of 5.6 hours per day), and uses them for advertising purposes in order to exploit the massive potential of 3 billion users worldwide.
The company offers a simple yet useful solution: they exploit the ‘dead’ areas of the mobile game design for publicity without forcing the gamer out of the game to watch the ad. This way, if you are playing a car-race game and you notice a billboard on the side of the road – it might be an actual ad that an actual company paid for.
In addition, if the gamer is disqualified, he has the option to purchase what he just saw in the ad during the game. The good news is that gComm allows the player to finish his game, purchase the product and immediately resume his game. It all happens within seconds and with minimal disruption to the gamer’s experience.
Not Just a Commercial but a Full Show
Last April, an interesting phenomenon suddenly appeared in the skies of Shanghai to the amazement of locals and tourists alike: A scanning barcode made out of 1,500 synchronized drones appeared above pedestrians.
If you walked down the street and saw a huge barcode in the sky – wouldn’t you scan it? Many did scan the code, only out of mere curiosity. This specific code led to a downloadable link to a mobile game that is now celebrating its one-year anniversary: Princess Connect! Re: Dive. There is no doubt that this is innovation at its best: using the world’s largest billboard.
Advertising in the Shadows
As the use of the Shadowfencing method may not be entirely new, its massive potential earns it a place on this list. Did you ever receive a mobile ad and immediately saw a similar one on the street? As you probably suspected – It’s not a coincidence.
Huge cooperations recently decided to strengthen the connection between the physical and the virtual world, and therefore make sure their customers get their mobile ads shortly before they pass the actual real-life billboard. This way, companies operate in different channels and get their customer’s attention – twice in a row.
Everyone loves to feel special and different. The low-cost airline company EasyJet was able to internalize this fact and launched a huge and complex campaign this year: They used the flight history data of past customers and sent them their flight details to make them want to book another flight.
Next time you order a cup of coffee or a plane ticket to your next holiday – just remember big companies remember your latest purchases as well, and might as well use this information to their advantage in the future.
Assisted in the preparation of this article: Michal Peskovski & Noy Peri
Regev Gur is a Forbes 30Under30 graduate and the CEO and owner of Narrative – a marketing and business development company based in New York. his firm exclusively deals with US-based influencers and manages international campaigns.
Forbes Israel Contributors are independent writers that were individually picked by Forbes staff. The writers are experts in their field and they provide professional commentary and analysis of current events. The content is unsponsored.