Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Billboards Cluster is not helping your brand at all

Visual Pollution in Lebanon is not new, yet, it has gone out of proportions. Billboard ads are visuals displayed in the public space for all to see. That is a big responsibility, that I feel, is sometimes taken lightly in Lebanon. While there is so many talented designers and art directors, we still submit to the eyes of the people on the road anything we have (+ a brand name), pay the money to rent that "display" and that's it.
I might sound like an idealist, but I think that since the viewer is granting us a bit of his attention, and space within his "framed sight", we at least owe him something interesting or beautiful if not both together.

Billboards Cluster is not helping your brand at all, the viewer is actually getting immune to these rectangles with images and words inside of them. Specially if it is a street where he goes everyday, after a while he knows how to dismiss certain parts of the view in front on him. So, what he actually ends up seeing is something like that:
In this corner, coming down from Yerevan bridge into Dekwaneh, there is at least 15 billboards.

Another epidemy, is that advertiser got the idea of mixing the "more is more" phenomenon with the "bigger is better" strategy and... apply that to the same campaign and you get something like this:
Same ad on 5 close billboards so close all seen in the same view.
This actually makes the product look so desperate to be noticed and shouting so much for attention, that it looses its "sex appeal" making it look like small movie/ plays posters only with a big budget.

Repetition of (small) posters in comparison with repetition of billboards.
Small budgets would wish for a few billboards distributed in the city, not having that, they repeat the posters that pedestrian see, hoping people in their cars, stuck in traffic, will notice their ads. While "big budgets with no creativity", let's call them the BBWNC bunch, are doing the same with billboards filling every corner with the same visual repetitively, for lack of a better way to spend the money and get the brand noticed.
Yeah, we saw the ad. Yeah, we read it. Yet, these ads are rarely engaging us (positively). Most of the times, we continue driving, thinking how suffocating that is the first time we see these, and the next days, these ads  just look like (ugly) decoration of the city or, on better days, like the lighting poles of the street (since it is the only night light we have with the electricity rationing on some nights in Beirut).
An Ad the size of a building you can not miss, yet so meaningless, lame and visually dull. Oh, How the view is nicer without it!

Also when mixing "really really bigger is really really better" with "meaningless" you get a counter reaction like: "I am never buying from that place, if that is the ad, imagine the product".
Of course, the relief you get from crossing past the advertisement and finally having an open view on the Mountain adds up to you regretting seeing that piece of  ____"Art".

Monday, March 12, 2012

Almost a year later, The Blues Collection intervention in the street, part of the rePLACE Beirut workshop.

 Almost a year after the rePLACE Beirut Workshop, The Blues Collection intervention is still visible on the corner of the street between Fassouh and Charles Malek avenue.
No one removed the framing tape, unlike on this post, or pasted a new poster above it. is this not a premium poster spot, though on the avenue?

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