Turkish Airlines Uses QR Flags for London Scavenger Hunt

Turkish Airlines QR Code Scavenger Hunt

Just wrapping up today in London is a campaign from Turkish Airlines that leverages QR codes in a citywide scavenger hunt. Digital billboards on transit shelters display QR codes based on the national flags of countries competing in the London 2012 Olympics. Once the user has scanned a QR code they are redirected to a mobile site where the user can ‘checkin’ to that country.

Other features of the mobile site are; ‘Locations’ which show other QR Flags are in the area around you, ‘Stats’ show you the total number of QR codes you’ve collected, and ‘Offers’ displaying flight specials from London to that destination.

The person who ends up with the most ‘check-ins’ at the end of the contest will win two return ticket to one of Turkish Airlines 200 destinations. The campaign is a great example of how a mobile site can still offer an experience that’s equal to

[via 2D Code]


Hotels.com Presents Xtreme Hotel Booking 2: Running with the Bulls

Hotels.com - Andy Bell Runs with the Bulls

Last year Hotels.com demonstrated their mobile app by having veteran parachute jumper JT Holmes jump out of a plane at 20,000 feet over Lake Tahoe, and attempt to book a hotel room during his freefall.

This year they’ve recruited former member Nitro Circus, and Kelowna, BC’s own Andy Bell for Xtreme Hotel Booking 2. Andy’s challenge? Use the Hotels.com mobile app to book a room while running with a herd of rampaging bulls in Pamplona, Spain.

Every year hundreds of people are injured (mostly minor) during the runs at the festival, but the truly unfortunate part is most of these powerful bulls are killed as part of the bullfighting events that occurs in the afternoon.

The ad was created by Y&R Chicago.

[via Agency Spy]

Gatwick Uses Soundcloud to Share Fairytales with Young Fliers

Gatwick FairytalesGatwick Airport is the second largest international airport in London, with 33.6 million passengers passing through it’s two terminals. With so many families move through the airport this summer, Gatwick is leveraging social audio platform Soundcloud to provide a series of audio books to help entertain kids during the long waits before their flights.

The Gatwick Fairytales Soundcloud channel features audio for 10 well known classic fairy tales including The Ugly Duckling, Little Red Riding Hood and Rumpelstiltskin. The most often played fairytale by far is Goldilocks and the Three Bears.

In addition to the classic stories, Gatwick is also asking other authors who want to participate to send their story to creative.thinking@gatwickairport.com. There’s more information about the criteria for the stories at Gatwick’s Tumblr. The Soundcloud channel features two stories so far ‘Kiss Kiss Jellyfish‘ by Amy Oriani and a 34 minute extract from the novel ‘Kip Doodle and the Armchair of Lost Dreams‘ by Simon Forward. A new story will be recorded and released each week until the end of the summer.

Credit for the project goes to London’s The Rabbit Agency.


Discover Ireland Ad Invites Londoners to Escape the Madness

Discover Ireland - Escape the Madness

Irish actor Mark O’Dowd, best known in North America as the lovable cop in Bridesmaids, is the voice (and makes a brief appearance) of a new Discover Island campaign that hopes to lure Londoners away from their soon-to-be tourist-clogged streets over to Ireland for a quick visit.

In the ad O’Dowd claims that it may take less time to fly to Ireland than it will for people in London to reach their office, and he challenges two Londoners to a race. City Boy must struggle through traffic, grab a latte and drink it at his desk, while Yer Man (love the names) must fly to Ireland and enjoy a pint of Guinness by the sea. As you can imagine City Boy is facing an uphill battle, while the worst Yer Man faces is an exploding bag or airline peanuts and a errant flock of sheep.

While you’re enjoying the video… I’ll already be on my favorite patio savoring a pint of ‘Guinnee Guinnee Blum Blums’. I’m really hoping that people really say that?

At the end you can choose the option to ‘Escape the Madness‘, where you can win a weekend trip to Ireland or ‘Embrace the Madness‘, where you can win access to the Irish Olympic House and a 200 bar tab.

The ad was put together by Publicis London.

Carnival Cruise Lines Fights Boring Sites with the Yawn Bomb

Carnival Cruises unleashes the Yawn Bomb

This could easily be the most tortuous blog post I’ve ever tried to write. From the moment I read this story I’ve been yawning, and since the act of yawning has been proven to be extremely contagious, there’s a pretty good chance that you’re yawning now too.

Carnival Cruise Lines is fighting the good fight against boring websites by having users share links that contain a hidden Yawn Bomb (I just yawned again). Just enter the ‘boring’ URL, choose one of the animated gifs, and the application creates a shortened link to share with your friends, enemies, frenemies or even your mom. Soon everyone will be yawning

The Yawn Bomb site was created by Arnold Worldwide.

Bastards! (yawwwwwwwwwwn)

Skippy the Robot Promotes Sun Valley With Remote Control Stone-Skipping

Skippy the Rock Skipping Robot

It’s rare for me to stroll pass a calm body of water and not want to stop and skip a few stones across the surface. I’m lucky enough to live a short walk away from the Credit River, Port Credit Harbour and Lake Ontario… now if I can just find some super smooth stones along the shore for that perfect skip.

For those stone-skippers trapped in the city away from the water, Skippy the Stone Skipping Robot is available to help. This week Skippy has been positioned at the edge of a small lake in Sun Valley, Idaho, where he can be operated by remote control in real-time by users around the world. But, you’ll have to catch Skippy during the daylight, as he’s apparently afraid of the dark.

The site also features an opportunity to win a vacation to Sun Valley by packing your getaway car with activities such as fly fishing, white water rafting and a night in a Coyote Yurt. (yes, I had to look it up too)

The Skip Town campaign was created by San Francisco agency Eleven.


KLM promotes ‘Meet & Seat’ Program with Celebrity Seatmate Contest

KLM Meet & Seat programEarlier this year Dutch airline KLM introduced a ‘Meet & Seat‘ program. Passengers who connected their Linkedin or Facebook to their booking could see the profiles of other passengers who had also chose to share their profiles. Connections could be made to get together prior, during or after the flight… and it was widely panned as being ‘really’ creepy.

Meet & Seat is still around, and KLM is promoting the program with ‘Ne My Guest’, a contest where you can not only win a great trip to a cool destination, but you can also choose a well-known Dutch celebrity to sit beside you on the flight.

You (and a friend, I assume they have to sit somewhere else on the plane) can join footballer Ruud Gullit on a trip to London to watch a Chelsea game; party backstage with DJ Armin van Buuren (somewhere) in the US, fly with supermodel Yfke Sturm to Couture Fashion Week in New York, attend the La Biennale Film Festival in Venice with actor and director Jeroen Krabbe, designer Hella Jongerius at the Oranjebaum Exhibition in Berlin, or finally join the first Dutch astronaut Wubbo Ockels (best name ever) for a space flight training mission.

KLM is on a winning streak of very creative initiatives over the past year including a day when they gathered together 140 employees to tweet replies, added 4000 of their Facebook fans photos to a plane and hosting a dance party on a plane at 35,000 feet to promote a new Amsterdam-Miami route.


Giant Vending Machine Dispenses British Columbia Experiences

100BCMomentsSan Franciscans passing by Justin Herman Plaza on May 17 stumbled across a 14-foot-tall, 10 foot-wide vending machine that appeared overnight. No, it wasn’t another magical Coke machine. This was the BC Moments Machine, a promotion for Tourism British Columbia and the 100BCMoments website encouraging people to consider a visit to BC this summer.

Throughout the day the BC Moments Machine ‘dispensed’ such exciting items as mountain bikes, kayaks and BC-made surfboards.

The experiential campaign was created by Citizen Optimum, with the vending machine produced by The Media Merchants.


Tourism Richmond Recruits Foodie for 365 Days of Dining Out

Richmond, BC - 365 Days of DiningThe entries are in, and now it’s up to the folks at Tourism Richmond to sort through the 1500+ applications from foodies from around the world to select the lucky person who’ll spend the next year dining out at Richmond restaurants.

The selected applicant will be ‘required’ (tough gig) to dine out at one of Richmond’s 800+ restaurants each day, sharing the experience through photos and blog posts. For their troubles they will receive a base salary of $50,000 CAD, a daily stipend for restaurant meals, apartment and living costs, and a gym membership to hopefully offset the calories from their dining adventures.

You can keep up to date on the contest on the Tourism Richmond Facebook page and the 365 Days of Dining website.

Air New Zealand is looking for the Coldest Canadian

Air New Zealand - Are You the Coldest Canadian?Today on the way in to work I saw 12×18 posters for Air New Zealand’s Coldest Canadian Contest on a few mail boxes and power poles along King Street West. It looked interesting enough, certainly topical enough in the -10 degree weather, and I’m a sucker for these user-generated video submission contests. I took a second look at them at lunch time and noticed a couple of issues with my first interaction with the creative.

First of almost every poster I came across was mounted at waist or below height making it virtually impossible to get down and read the information including the URL. In the lower left corner was a very small QR code, I’d say it might have been a half-inch square. I squatted down in the slush and tried to scan it with my normally reliable QR code scanner, but it didn’t work for me. I assume it will redirect my mobile browser to the ColdestCanadian.ca site. I took a moment and typed the URL into my iPhone browser. The site that I saw was not optimized for mobile, it was the standard web page. It displayed fine, but I did have to enlarge and scan around in order to read. I did share the poster with a couple of friends, but the sharing was not done through the site. It was done by taking an iPhone photo and emailing it to them.

I’ll be on the lookout in other media for additional initial touch points with the campaign.

A few things that could have worked better with the poster and mobile experience:

  • Mount the posters higher so I could read them while walking by or standing at a crosswalk
  • If you are using a QR code think about how your viewer is going to interact with it. Having it at the top of the poster would have been better position.
  • Make sure the QR code is the correct ratio for scanners to pick it up. I am assuming the poster had been sized-down from a larger creative, so the ratio may have been correct to begin with.
  • A site optimized for my mobile device would have allowed me to check out the information while I was still in the area.

Once I arrived back at work, I did check out the site and the contest looks like a lot of fun. Air New Zealand is asking people who want to enter the contest to submit a three-minute video demonstrating why they are ‘The Coldest Canadian’. Once the video is approved its up to the entrant to collect as many votes, comments and likes as they can. The contest features weekly prizes as well as Grand Prize of a round-trip airfare to Auckland, NZ. There is a Google Map showing where the coldest Canadians are located and live reminders of how cold the temperatures are in different areas of the country (and how much warmer it is in New Zealand right now).