Creative Saves with Brazilian OOH

This post is also available in: Spanish

Usually, our consulting work with firms centers on what type of media to use and how to use it. We almost never get involved with the creative. It’s usually not necessary. But recently we had to step in to help a client avoid some major creative missteps with an out-of-home (OOH) advertising campaign.

Save #1: The Setting
Originally, the client approached us to help pick a format and determine placement for some panels. The setting was to be beaches in the Rio de Janeiro area. However, the client wasn’t targeting all the right beaches in Rio, so we immediately made suggestions based on our expertise. Since I’m a native of Brazil—as are two of our media division heads and our VP of Ad Sales—we knew exactly where the panels should go for maximum impact.

Save #2: The Set-Up
In terms of the OOH ads themselves, the client wanted to combine panels in one area of the beach with an inflatable billboard in the water. A clever idea, but we quickly pointed out that Brazil’s laws would make it tough—if not impossible—to get permits for an inflatable billboard in a timely manner.  Instead, we suggested a plane with an aerial banner. Perfectly legal and great exposure as people looked up while sunning themselves or splashing around. For panel placement, we recommended backlight panels that would be placed on the back of newsstands. As it turns out, a number of newsstands in Brazil are located very close to major beaches. With this placement, most beachgoers would see the panels just as they were arriving. As such, our strategy would allow the ads to reach the audience upon arrival and then while enjoying the beach—with no legal obstacles.

Save #3: The Copy
When the creative for the banner arrived, we spotted a huge problem. The campaign concept was about unity between Brazil and another country. While the approach was playful, it also involved nudity and its message could be interpreted as offensive to Brazilian women. We knew instantly that this could lead to a backlash with the public—not to mention that the government could conceivably ban the ads because of their content. After discussions with the client, they agreed to go with an all-type aerial banner. With the client’s input, our team created the messaging. We managed to tie it into the overall campaign concept yet still work culturally for Brazilians. Our new copy stressed unity but in a broad sense that left no room for misinterpretation.

End Result
Our OOH campaign generated positive buzz in the media, drove response for the advertiser and the overall campaign even earned industry recognition, winning Gold awards in a number of ad competitions.

To learn more about how we can help you with your next OOH campaign, contact us at info@usmediaconsulting.com. You can get the big picture on Brazil’s media market here and can learn more about why you should advertise in Brazil even without a local presence here.

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