Innovation That Matters

American dollar | Photo source Vladimir Solomyani on Unsplash

City-wide publicity stunt dares people to find hidden money

Advertising & Marketing

A new campaign was created to test how people interact with advertising stunts and rewards participants for being observant.

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American underwear manufacturer Fruit-of-the-Loom is betting people won’t notice its latest advertising campaign. It has been designed to be so subtle that hardly anyone notices it. The campaign promotes the brand’s new Everlight collection. A line of men’s and women’s underwear so light that people won’t even know they are wearing it. Together with an advertising agency, Crispin Porter & Bogusky, Fruit-of-the-Loom created a poster to give participants directions to find USD 1800. Additionally, the company viewed the campaign as a good social experiment to see how many people would get involved with advertising today.

The creative team set up props around the Lower East Side of Manhattan, along with hidden cameras. The props gave clear instructions on how to find stashes of cash with Everlight underwear placed nearby. One poster contained a QR code with instructions to punch through the poster to retrieve USD 1851 hidden just behind it. In this case, the purpose of the poster was to celebrate the year Fruit-of-the-Loom was founded – 1851. The agency reported that of the millions of people in New York City, only six people initially noticed the signs and found the money. Furthermore, according to CP&B, even after the first person noticed the poster hiding the money, it took him nearly two hours to decide to punch through it and take the cash.

Other props also included cash hidden behind a tiny, red door; a tiny, inflatable tube man holding instructions for finding cash; and a viewing scope pointed at a brick wall – passersby look through it to see instructions to finding rewards.

In a world that seems at time overrun with advertising, it takes more and more to get noticed. At Springwise, we have covered a number of unusual advertising campaigns. These have included a feature film used to encourage organ donations and the use of naked-eye AR. Will more ad campaigns embrace subtlety in the future?

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