“The very existence of flamethrowers proves that sometime, somewhere, someone said to themselves, ‘You know, I want to set those people over there on fire, but I’m just not close enough to get the job done.” ― George Carlin
Ideas can come from anywhere. And there wouldn’t be advertising without invention. Staying up to date on the latest technology and keeping consumers interested has always been very important in the marketing industry. Adweek’s Project Isacc Awards celebrates the agencies that are staying ahead of the curve and inventing new ways to engage their target audience.
Here are some of the most unique, and just plain cool new inventions in advertising.
Oreo Trending Vending
In the Event/Experience category Oreo won gold utilizing a new technology that they unveiled at SXSW this year. Using 3-D printing technology and social media at an Oreo vending booth (conceived by Oreo parent company Mondelēz International) in Austin, Texas, people who waited up to two hours in line got to design their own cookie from 12 flavors and cream colors, then see it get made by the 3-D printer. More than 16,000 cookies were made, but the bigger payoff came in earned media. Social, print and online impressions totaled more than 42 million.
3-D printing has been at the forefront of many industries, so it’s important for brands to take a look at how they can utilize this exciting new technology.
Air Purifying Billboard
In the Marketing category, FCB Mayo Lima won gold with their air purifying billboard for UTEC, a Peruvian engineering university who was starting a massive contruction renovation. Realizing its expansion would create pollution, UTEC teamed again with agency FCB Mayo in Lima to design a billboard that literally helps residents and construction workers breathe easier. Using a water filtration system, the technology generates as much clean oxygen as 1,200 trees, or a radius of five blocks.
This is a perfect example of how brands can utilize traditional advertising in an exciting way. Billboards are seen as a marketing dinosaur, but when you add innovative technology, it can become new and shiny again.
Nivea Sun Solar Charger
In the Creative category, FCB Brazil won gold by taking a print ad to a whole new level. Last year, Nivea Sun ads, fitted with wafer-thin solar cells and a phone plug, appeared in some issues of a popular general-interest magazine. These special inserts used sunlight to charge cellular batteries, so folks could linger by the seaside, secure in the knowledge their phones wouldn’t die. It was a natural way to encourage people to use the product in the sun for as long as they wanted.
This idea not only took the print medium in a completely new direction, but it also reached the target on a level that goes beyond the Nivea product and really spoke to a universal need that everyone has; a dying phone and no outlet or charger.
These ideas and inventions are so innovative that it gives a new, exciting perspective to advertising and the unlimited possibilties for how to talk to consumers. In the words of HBO’s Girls, “The magic happens outside of your comfort zone.” Use these examples as inspiration for your next campaign and see what kind of magic you can create.
What is your favorite new advertising invention?