Police in Switzerland have hired a man to dress up as an angel as part of a campaign to encourage drivers to slow down. I have no idea why I immediately pictured an 80′s metal, three-wolf moon inspired poster when I read the title. It’s not my usual, but it feels nice doing something different. I’m not sure it would work. I’m certain he will demand attention if you were to see him while driving. Would I slow down probably not? It’s seems like an interesting concept for a campaign.
I’ve never been a fan of costume marketing. I’ve never once bought a pizza from Little Caesars because the mascot was on the corner pimping $5 large pizzas. However, the fact that I can recall the price, mascot, company name, product and location proves that it works. Another example was mid-April, right before tax day when I would spot Lady Liberty advertising for a tax preparer in a very dingy area.
Then you have the sign holders. If you are lucky, once in a while, you get one of the enthusiastic ones. In the heat of summer, they dance to the beat of the music in their headphones. They flip their signs up-side down, in 360 spins demanding one second of your time at a red light. Most of the time they just stand there and wiggle their sign back and forth seeing their shadow grow longer and longer as the day stretches on. I always thought to myself, how this even works. They look miserable. Why would you want this type of energy representing your company and your brand? Then one day I see something that totally takes the cake.
I was at a red light and in the corner of my eye I catch a very attractive young blonde holding a sign. In that tenth of a second, I turn my head only to see that it was a cardboard sign of the top half of a blonde girl holding a sign, in which an actual person was hiding behind, swaying it back and forth. That’s right, hide your misery behind the cardboard blonde girl. Hide!
Will the angel help bring awareness and help people in Switzerland slow down? If not, here’s my idea. Everyone and their mom loves slowing down to look at traffic accidents. I would stage a 2-3 car accident. Have one car flipped over or something and have one of the wheels spinning as if the accident just happened. If you want you can even make fake flames like the kind you see in Pirates of the Caribbean ride at Disneyland. Fake smoke. Fake fire. Who wouldn’t slow down for that?!