Visual advertising captures our attention in unique ways. However, as the general demographic has been bombarded with so many advertisements on a daily basis, we have become somewhat immune to straight-forward advertising. Because of this, many marketing companies have had to get particularly creative, whether with wisecrack jokes, something interactive, something completely unexpected, or an element of ambiguity that really makes you think.
From creative bus stop advertisements that make the wait a whole lot more interesting, to magazine advertisements that make you linger on the page, print and other visual advertising is still working wonders all around us.
There were a few particularly powerful outdoor advertisement campaigns this year, however, that went beyond the interactive and unconventional elements iconic of guerilla advertising, which really left an impression with us. Intricate and beautiful prints on online galleries deserve to be seen in their own right, yet some digital billboards and slapdash posters pasted up around the city are undeniably attention grabbing and impossible not to interact with.
28 Too Many Print Advertisement
One of the most memorable campaigns was the 28 Too Many campaign to raise awareness for Female Genital Mutilation (FGM). The campaign aimed to confront the fact that FGM isn’t something that just happens in Africa or the Middle East, but that women are at risk in Europe as well. The campaign was simple and effective; they took the flag of several EU countries, such as UK, Sweden, Netherlands, Germany, Italy, and imposed them on a hard, leather-like material and showed it stitched closed with hints of what appear to be blood residue. The effect is that each flag takes on the appearance of an FGM victim; a relatively simply idea with a very powerful and effective message.
Women’s Aid’s “Look at Me” Interactive Billboard
This digital advertisement campaign by Women’s Aid appears rather simple when you first look at it. You see a woman covered in bruises, clearly a victim of abuse, with the urgent phrase “look at me” posted to the left of her head, and the phrase “we can stop it” posted to the right. However, this billboard implemented facial recognition technology that scanned the crowd to see when people actually looked at the billboard. When people maintained eye contact with the billboard, the woman’s bruises and cuts started to heal. This interactive campaign was incredibly effective in getting people to stop and take notice.
Abrinq Foundation Save The Children Campaign
One of the most striking print campaigns that we have ever seen, Abrinq Foundation’s Save The Children campaign is absolutely jarring. At first the print ad appears to be like any other populating a fashion magazine, depicting high-fashion clothing articles. However, each garment is striped, and peeking through the stripes of the garment is the sad face of a child that appears to be behind bars. The visual effect is stunning, and the small line of text at the bottom merely mentions that no garment should cost a childhood.
This ad campaign really brings to the forefront the prison of child labor and how our consumerist behavior perpetuates the problem. It ensures that the nagging truth that everyone knows lies behind the fashion industry is not out of sight and out of mind. We think this was a brilliant campaign that leaves a lasting impact.