The Hyundai Motor Company has just launched a dazzling new interactive billboard campaign at the world famous Times Square in Manhattan, New York. The campaign, which is called “Hyundai Brilliant Interactive Art,” creates a two-way communication between consumers and corporate groups, targeting tourists and pedestrians as they traverse the square. The highly technological billboard is the latest step in Hyundai's 'Modern Premium' brand direction, and follows on from their the 2011 'Hyundai Race', and the 2012 'Hyundai Brilliant Image Show'. The Hyundai Race campaign (shown below) allowed Times Square visitors to control a gigantic video game using their phones via a bespoke app and the Live Image Show captured their images and imposed them into a gigantic car.
The 'Hyundai Race' campaign from 2011
The billboard works almost as a form of interactive street art, communicating emotionally with passers-by through the virtual character of “Mr. Brilliant,” who lives within a bespoke, three-sided billboard. The billboard is installed with a high-tech facial recognition camera, which captures a visitors' face and then pastes it onto one of six backgrounds. These backgrounds include a typical Times Square tourist, a New York City artist, an NYPD officer, a celebrity jogger crossing the Manhattan Bridge, a professional race car driver in (of course) a Hyundai or (my personal favourite) the Statue of Liberty. The billboard can also be adorned with messages that passers-by can send in to “Mr. Brilliant” via their smartphones. It's very similar (in theory) to a similar campaign called 'Little Piccadilly' created by McDonald's back in April, and displayed at the similarly busy and iconic Piccadilly Circus in London, only this is a far more ambitious affair.
The campaign, which is called “Hyundai Brilliant Interactive Art,” creates a two-way communication between consumers and corporate groups, targeting tourists and pedestrians as they traverse the square
A representative from Hyundai said the campaign is “Intended to build brand awareness and reach a large audience by departing from the traditional brand marketing strategy." They said they expect the interactive billboard to “Provide opportunities for visitors from around the world to experience the Hyundai Motor brand in a fun and memorable fashion." If they were looking to impress people from around the world, Times Square was the right choice, as the bustling heart of Manhattan is one of the busiest pedestrian intersections in the world boasting more than 300,000 visitors a day and more than 100 million each year.
The 'Hyundai Brilliant Image Show' campaign from 2012
Hyundai is also conducting numerous other unique consumer communication displays as part of its 2012 'Live Brilliant' campaign, which will help consumers experience the Hyundai brand via campaigns such as 'Culture/Art branding' sponsorship of famous galleries like 'Tate Modern' and 'National Museum of Contemporary Art' and the 'Hyundai Motor Studio Seoul' that opened in 2014.
Benjamin Hiorns is a freelance writer and musician from Kidderminster in the UK who finds the idea of “Mr. Brilliant” actually quite disturbing.