DDB makes lemonade for Vancouver shopping mall

While others merely grumbled about shopper-discouraging construction, the agency found a way for the Richmond Centre to turn misfortune into advantage.

Bad luck – in the form of construction for a new rapid transit system – struck Vancouver’s Richmond Centre just in time to send seasonal fall shoppers elsewhere. But DDB Canada’s local office figured out how to turn that humongous lemon into a surprising treat.

‘As the roadwork moved closer to our shopping centre,’ explains marketing director Leslie Matheson, ‘we needed to stay positive and be proactive by alerting shoppers that Richmond Centre is still easily accessible and open for back-to-school shopping.’

So, in a decidedly unconventional campaign, DDB developed attention-getting, construction-themed OOH advertising to redirect shoppers to the mall’s 240 stores and services via an alternative route. Along the way are repurposed versions of standard orange warning signs, saying things like ‘Be prepared to shop’ and ‘Back to school shopping ahead.’ Construction-style LED directional messages warn drivers about ‘Men Working’ and ‘Women Shopping.’

Orange signs on transit shelters transform familiar stick figures into, for example, two shoppers trying to snag the same purse. And there’s a gigantic branded shopping bag, saying ‘For Serious Shoppers,’ dangling 200 feet in the air from a crane outside the shopping centre.

With media buys by OMD Canada’s Vancouver office, the playful four-week campaign – which kicked off yesterday – also includes print and radio ads and POP material.