Thanks to Honda, Times Square introduced its first 3-D billboard experience today.
Launching a car is near and dear to my heart. I’m currently working on a launch for one of our clients and I can tell you this – there’s nothing more important than getting people to interact with the car. They need to touch it, feel it, and as much as possible, drive it. New York and Times Square isn’t the best place to hold test drives, but it is the best place to create a spectacle. And that’s exactly what Honda did. For having a hoopla in Times Square, they did it up right. There were actual cars for people to see, there were video games (racing games) for people to play, there were models and 3-D magazines, photo booths for people to take the moment with them, N-E-R-D, and of course, the 3-D video, larger than one can imagine, coming at everyone in 3-D. Now, I don’t know that if I would have pushed for the actual execution of many of these pieces, but I am impressed that they went for it on this scale, and it looks like they pulled it off. I am a little disappointed that I didn’t/haven’t seen many social media tie-ins to this event, but maybe they were just thinking that the event itself would create the amount of buzz that satisfied them. I thought it was a missed opportunity. At the very least, throw a #hashtag out there for people to create conversations around.
From an OOH standpoint, they used the real-estate and technology in a way that has never been used before, which you have to give them credit for. Now, guess how many brands are going to do the same thing in the same place. The 3-D glasses are a bit of a drawback, but I’m sure someone will create a mobile app sooner or later so the experience can be had in a less-goofy way.
I appreciate everything that goes into something like this and from my perspective, they were successful. Could they have been more successful? I think the answer to that is most always yes. They utilized various channels, but is their story consistent and evolving over those channels? I honestly don’t know. But here’s the thing – while creating a spectacle in Times Square is nothing new, they pulled off 1 thing that hadn’t ever been done before. So for that, they do get the thumbs up.