December 21, 2010
BMW Wants to Burn Its Brand Naming Into Your Retinas
BMW is testing out a new ad that burns their brand name into the retinas of viewers.
It has already been tested on audiences in Germany using a studio flash unit generator set up behind a movie screen.
The flash goes off at the end of an ad where champion motorcycle racer Ruben Xaus intones, "Close your eyes and you will see it. Close them now."
Sure enough, if you close your eyes, you will see the letters BMW temporarily.
This is essentially the same effect you get from looking at the sun or, well, a flash, but this is the first time it has been used in advertising.
Already a few people are wondering what the long term ramifications would be if many more companies adopted this gimmick.
People seem to find this a little "creepy." The flashes only range from 1/1,400s to 1/3,000s but there is a clear worry that the flashes could cause epileptic seizures among audiences.
The flash can be worked into the narrative of the ads - in this case, it was from the headlights of the BMW bike.
The ad faired well with the German audience, with many reporting that the ad impressed them.
The bigger question is whether or not audiences worldwide will appreciate this new "subliminal" advertising.
My feeling is that it might work in Europe, but it probably will not make it to the U.S. - it just has "frivolous lawsuit" written all over it.
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