Outdoor

Just in time for Cannes, we round up the best in Canadian outdoor.

Rona piggybacks on Apple
This wasn’t just an outdoor execution, it was a covert op – a difficult one.
Last spring, Montreal-based Bos AD Martin Bernier and copywriter Simon Beaudry saw an Apple “Nano-chromatique” billboard that looked like paint was dripping from a row of colourful iPods. They came up with the idea of piggybacking on it for Rona to promote the home improvement store’s paint-collection program.
The plan was to covertly place a Rona banner directly under the Apple ad on a wall in Toronto, making it appear as though Rona cans were collecting the dripping paint. But when they arrived at 3 a.m., the ad had been painted white. The Bos team ran to another location bearing the ad, but were met by the paint crew, who showed no mercy and painted over that one too.
Bos decided to try the stunt again near Autoroute 40 in Montreal, but as they went to measure the billboard, once again, a crew showed up to take down the Apple ad.
Their last chance was a huge billboard overlooking the Jacques Cartier Bridge – the most crossed bridge for commuters in Montreal. Luckily this time the Apple ad stayed up long enough.
The Rona banner was only visible for the morning commute from 5 a.m. until noon, but the effects lasted much longer.
A YouTube video of the execution garnered 200,000 hits, it was covered by media all over the world, and, in the last year,
about 2 million kgs of paint has been brought in to Rona stores.

McDonald’s plays with its food
In early 2009, McDonald’s shook the caffeinated world by offering free coffee to the jittery masses, and to promote it, the QSR went on an OOH bonanza that included transit shelters with coffee beans inside and giant steaming cups of joe on the streets.
To launch the second phase of its free coffee promo in November, McDonald’s AOR Cossette in Toronto came up with the idea to stir pedestrian curiosity with a delicious art installation in one of the busiest areas of Toronto, Yonge-Dundas Square.
Much of the 660 litres of coffee used was brewed the day before and stored in an underground greenroom below the Square. Then, on a Monday morning, a team created a giant circular sun using different sized cups, filling them with varying amounts of coffee and cream. They then moved the cups around to create the illusion of the sun shining for a stop-motion video that captured the process. There was no McDonald’s branding visible until the very end, when the cups were moved to form the iconic Golden Arches.
The stop-motion video was posted on YouTube and garnered over 12,000 hits. And McDonald’s has continued its artisanal OOH streak, with giant Las Vegas-style signs promoting the McMini sandwiches popping up briefly on sidewalks across the country. As McDonald’s has learned with the Big Mac, if it works, keep going.

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