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A sign of the times

Let’s face it, we’ve become a nation joined at the hip with technology. So what better way to get an advertising campaign into the public eye than by putting an interactive spin on it? Interactive ads are a brilliant way to engage the public and inspire support for a campaign. And now, more and more advertisers are jumping on the interactive band waggon. We’ve been sharing plenty of them among the creative team, and here’s a pick of some of the best.
Sounds like a plan

Plan are on a mission, a mission to give girls more choice about their future. And they’re doing it with the help of some very clever bus shelter ads.
Their ads have a built-in facial recognition scanner which cleverly detects your sex and shows you a  different video depending on your gender. Girls receive the full ad which includes various success stories to inspire them to give support. And boys receive some shocking statistics and only half of the ad to demonstrate the lack of choices girls have around over the world. They’ve already had great success with more than 100,000 youtube views and 1,000 Facebook mentions. Which gives hope that Plan’s plan is grabbing some attention.
Down on the farm

Ever wanted to feed a pig without trudging through a smelly, muddy field in your wellies? Of course you have, and now thanks to Compassion in World Farming (CIWF) you can do just that.

CIWF have created the world’s first real live feed which allows shoppers to feed Patsy the pig on a giant Westfield shopping centre billboard. All it requires is a £1 text donation, after which you are sent a unique URL link which connects you to an online broadcast of Patsy. The broadcast then connects you to a machine that scatters feed for the pigs, and you get to watch Patsy scoffing away on your donation. Your donation goes towards CIWF’s campaign for free range farming and better welfare standards for animals everywhere. And we think it’s definitely something to squeal about.  
Hope to millions

Welcome to The Hope Tank, the British Heart Foundation’s (BHF) first interactive billboard. Supporting their Mending broken hearts appeal, it encourages shoppers to add a zebra fish to The Hope Tank with a small text donation.

‘Why a zebra fish?’ you ask.

Well, a zebra fish has the amazing ability to heal its own heart, something the BHF want to achieve for people everywhere. They are hoping to raise £50 million for research into the fish’s regenrative abilities, which could give hope to millions of people with damaged hearts. After sending your text donation your fish will be plopped into The Hope Tank for all to see. And what’s more, you’ll even get a personalised message on the billboard, thanking you for your support.

Every cloud has a silver lining

It’s that cold, wet and miserable time of year which gets us all wishing for white sandy beaches and Palm tress. And now lowcostholidays.com are capitalising on our winter blues for their Wish you were here campaign.

Their billboard asks passersby ‘Where are you thinking of going today?’ while capturing them with a hidden camera. It then relays the image back at them with holiday destinations in thought bubbles floating above their heads.

It’s proven to be a brilliant way of grabbing shoppers’ attention, as seen in their promotional video. And it’s even better for a lucky few who view the ad at it’s competition times for a chance to win a holiday. That would be enough to banish anyone’s winter blues.

Power up

What better way to advertise a new energy efficient car then with an energy efficient ad?

Well that’s exactly what Glue Isobar set out to do to to promote the new Toyota Yaris Hybrid. Partnering with PaveGen, a company which harvests energy from footsteps, the campaign uses PaveGen’s floor tiles to highlight the power of renewable energy. Using Ocean’s Eat Street location to showcase the car, shoppers walking past the screen and over the tiles help to create some of the energy to power the screen.

Each time a level of energy is produced, the car is ‘released’ to give one lucky shopper a free ride home. It’s aleady leaving footprints in the advertising world, winning the Ocean Outdoor digital competition. And it’s definitely got our stamp of approval.

Driving registrations to golf events

For the launch of our new community golf event the Big Golf Drive we went for a ‘does what it says on the tin’ concept, using close-up cropped silhouettes of golf clubs to give a dynamic feel to the materials.

On the registration leaflet for the Silverspoons event we put our heads together and managed to shoe-horn in a few new golf puns. After a few years working on the various golf events we thought the well might have run dry, but we managed to dredge up ‘We love greens’, ‘ Be an early birdie’, ‘We pitch in’ and ‘Putt it in the post’ (groan). It was December when we worked on this so maybe the panto season inspired us.

Charles Eames on Design: Q&A

Design Q&A from Charles Eames. Those who don’t know his work have possibly sat on it at some point in their lives, or at least wished they could… HERE


Steve Jobs brainstorming behind the scenes at NeXT. A fascinating watch, my favourite bit is right at the beginning when Paul Rand presents the logo to a wall of bemused programmers…
I can’t directly link to it, but you can view Paul Rand’s stunning presentation at the bottom of this page.

Bacon Takedown

Identity and poster design by Allan Peters
Wonderfully stylish and pun-ny design by Allan Peters, check out the full selection of posters here.
Mmmm, bacon.

Making QR codes standout

Quick link to some more creative QR codes… due to the 30% tolerance in readability, some designers have come up with great ways to make them stand out. I’m particularly liking the ones made with real objects: whaddaya think?

Turn your marketing skills to social good

Do you like the idea of doing your bit for charity – but get a bit nervous/lazy/busy when it comes to commiting to regular volunteering?
Sparked.com is a clever solution for the busy professional – it matches up people with skills (including design, marketing strategy, media and tech) with non for profits that need expert support on their projects. The clever bit is all the work can be done online – from the comfort of your own home, at a time that suits you.

So with just a bit of the time normally given to facebook, youtube or the DailyMail gossip pages you could critique a website or redesign a banner ad and make a difference to a charitable organisation. Over 150,000 people have signed up to volunteer so far and 10-30 non-profits are said to be registering every day day.

What’s also nice is the design and navigaition of the site are so fun, visual and simple that it makes you excited about seeking out an opportunity.

You can read about someone who’s tried micro volunteering with Sparked here.

Magazine Designer’s Guide to Magazines

In a word, fantastic. “If Magazines were part of your body, Time would be underarm hair and The Economist would be a rash on your chest”

Death by committee

Whoever said a camel is a horse designed by a committee gave committees too much credit. If a committee tried to design a horse, it wouldn’t end up with a strong, useful, if inelegant, animal. It would produce a mound of tin cans and fish skeletons. That’s what committees do: They change clarity into confusion and quality into crap.

Read on here

What’s small, furry and fashionable and packed with info?

OK, it’s not that furry, but Rabbit – the new pocket-sized newsletter for our celebrity supporters – does come loaded with stories and facts. And as it’s shortly heading out to our rapidly-growing list of celebrity supporters it’s bound to be seen in all the best places this autumn.

Hopefully the little chap will help encourage even more A-, B- and C-listers to get on board with Macmillan, and those already involved to do even more.

Rabbit is a Lara and Alex co-production.

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