HERE balloons

Seoul has the highest gasoline consumption in the world. With parking space scarce, people in Seoul drive around 15km a month to find space for their cars. This is equivalent to 1 Litre of gasoline being used only for parking.

So to help save gasoline, South Korean oil brand, S-Oil teamed up with Cheil Worldwide to devise a new way of telling people that there was a parking space available right next to them. Bright yellow HERE balloons were setup for each parking space. Then as a car parked, the balloon would fall. On leaving the space the balloon would rise again. Hence drivers around could see the colourful balloons from far away and spot the empty spaces without wandering all over.

In just one day, 700 cars used 23 litres less oil. Over a whole year, they saved much more.

Emart Flying Store

In May 2012, Emart created the Sunny Sale campaign which distributed coupons through a sun activated QR Code. Now in their latest campaign they have created “Flying Stores” which are nothing but truck-shaped balloons fitted with a Wifi router. šŸ˜Ž

These special balloon stores were floated in every corner of Seoul and people who could not get to an Emart store during the day, could then easily hook on to the balloons Wi-Fi signal and order directly online. As a result, Emart sales soared both in online and offline stores. Mobile sales increased by 157% and the E-Mart app got downloaded more than 50,000 times during the promotion month.

Also click here to see the 2011 flying fish balloons campaign done for the Sea Life park in Speyer, Germany.

Wi-Fi Poster

South Korean film distributor CJ Entertainment’s marketing approach relies heavily on conventional poster campaigns that are now becoming less likely to grab the attention of young moviegoers. So they teamed up with advertising agency Cheil to bring the world’s oldest and least popular ad medium into the smartphone era.

Unlike advertisements with QR codes that require the consumer to first download a mobile app then scan the code, the Wi-Fi poster connected the poster to the mobile device by simply tapping the Wi-Fi network menu. The name of the Wi-Fi network matched the film’s title, and tapping that name opened a pop-up with links to Full HD trailers, promotional events and online box offices.

The movie’s official site saw a 28.5% increase in traffic from wireless users, and users that interacted with the movie through the Wi-Fi Posters remained on the site 5x longer than regular users. The posters also translated to success at the box office with more advance ticket sales and better openings.

Emart Sunny Sale

Korea continues to set the standard in creative QR Code campaigns! In June last year Homeplus in South Korea had used QR Codes to create a virtual store in a subway station.

Now Emart, South Korea’s largest retailer has created shadow QR codes across the city that only become visible when the sun is at the correct angle in the sky i.e. between midday and 1pm. Consumers who scanned the QR Code during this period were re-directed to the Emart online store where they received $12 coupons for products that would be delivered to their homes.

The Sundial QR Codes were installed at 36 locations across Seoul and served more than 12,000 coupons. Emart membership increased by 58% and lunch hour sales went up by 25%.

Shop and Pay on-the-go

In June last year I had covered how Homeplus in South Korea had created a virtual store in a subway station in order to blend into people’s everyday lives. Since then Procter & Gamble has set up the same virtual stores in four of the busiest subway stations in Prague and Chinese online supermarket Yihodian has also borrowed the idea and installed virtual supermarkets in 15 subway stations around Shanghai.

This year PayPal has also launched the same QR code shops in 15 Singapore subway stations and enabled commuters to buy Valentines gifts from eight different retailers by simply scanning the QR code on their smartphoneā€¦

In USA, PayPal has eliminated the need of a wallet or phone altogether. In a partnership with Home Depot, PayPal has begun to roll out an in-store service that enables payments at stores using only a mobile phone number and a pin number at checkoutā€¦

Money is truly being re-imagined and contactless payments is going to be a norm by late 2012.

Detachable Bike Tour Vehicle

“Bike Guide” is an innovative concept from Seoul based designer Kukil Han. He has conceptualized a convenient two-in-one tour bus, which enables the passengers to detach their bikes at specific checkpoints in order to explore the surroundings.

Each individual bike is supposed to be equipped with a GPS, which would also notify the user of when and where to rejoin the group.

Last year there was also a very interesting Chinese concept about a “train that never stopped“.