Author: Amanda Giasson

Location based marketing scheme from Volkswagen shocks moviegoers

Hong Kong movie patrons unknowingly participated in a unique ad experiment.

A shocking car safety advertisement from Volkswagen (VW) realistically demonstrated the hazard of texting while driving at the MCL Cinema in Hong Kong, thanks to location based marketing technology.

The ad demonstrated to viewers just how dangerous texting and driving can be.

Prior to showing the feature film, the cinema showed the movie theater audience an advertisement that began with someone starting their car, listening to some peppy music and driving along a road densely populated with trees. The ad was shot in a first-person perspective, creating the atmosphere that the viewer was the one behind the wheel operating the vehicle.

The scenic drive continued for a little while until suddenly all of the moviegoers with mobile phones in the theater simultaneously received a text. When they took out their handsets to check the message, the car on the cinema screen careened off the road and crashed into a tree. The stunned moviegoers looked up from their phones to see the smashed windshield of the car. This image faded to a white screen and was followed by this message from the German automobile manufacturer: “Mobile use is now the leading cause of death behind the wheel. A reminder to keep your eyes on the road.”

This location based marketing strategy proved a powerful point.

The people in the move theater who received the text could not resist taking their eyes off of the screen to read the message on their phone. This is exactly when the crash occurred. The people who checked their mobile devices did not see the accident coming and that is precisely the point. All it takes is a moment or two of distraction with eyes off the road for an accident to happen.

This ad stunt, created by Ad Agency Ogilvy Beijing, was made possible at the Hong Kong cinema because the theater featured a location-based broadcaster. This technology enabled those behind the scenes to send a group text to all the patrons in the room at the same time.

So far, Volkswagen and Ogilvy Beijing’s location based marketing “Eyes on the Road” demonstration has generated a positive response. A video that captured the audience’s reactions, which has been uploaded to YouTube, has received over 12,000,000 views and counting.

Mobile app is launched to help people kick bad drinking habits

CAMH has developed an app based on a self-monitoring program.

The Centre for Addiction and Mental Health (CAMH), the biggest mental health and addiction teaching hospital in Canada, and one of the top research centers of its kind in the world, has created a new mobile app called “Saying When” that provides assistance to individuals who would like to lower their alcohol intake or quit drinking altogether, by giving them the capability of tracking and managing their alcohol consumption habits.

Saying When is designed for those concerned about their drinking, not those with a serious alcohol use disorder.

The app is the mobile version of a clinical self-monitoring program established by Dr. Martha Sanchez-Craig. The program has successfully managed to help people reduce or quit drinking for more than 25 years.

CAMH’s deputy clinical director, Wayne Skinner, said “We’ve been waiting for the technology to catch up to this program.” He went on to say that “The ability to discreetly track and monitor urges and consumption in real time will help people who are concerned about their drinking be successful with their goal to reduce or abstain.”

According to CAMH’s director, library services & knowledge mobilization, Tim Trip, Saying When is the sole mobile tool that is based on a well-known clinical program that has been specifically designed to aid people in monitoring their alcohol consumption and their efforts to lower consumption or give it up.

Self-monitoring mobile app for alcohol consumptionAfter downloading the Saying When app, users are given a tour of its features. This includes an introduction to Canada’s Low Risk Drinking Guidelines, which were created by the National Alcohol Strategy Advisory Committee. Users are then prompted to complete the “Taking Stock” section, which helps them determine their present drinking habits and sets a basic guideline for future success.

The Mobile app makes personal tracking easier and more accurate.

The Saying When app provides users with information using info graphics. When a user enters a drink, it is measured when they fill the interactive glass. From there, the app concludes the number of standard drinks that have been consumed. In addition, as it tracks and the user makes progress, it provides them with suggestions for success. The app also has a coping section that gives users the chance to rank and discover what techniques work best for them personally.

In May 2014, a report was released by the World Health Organization that revealed Canadians consume more alcohol compared to the global average and that 23% of drinkers binge drink. Drinking excessively can lead to more than 200 diseases and injuries and is a massive public health concern. Skinner believes the Saying When mobile app will allow CAMH to reach more people and help them.