Massive media buy immerses commuters in 4D

TAXI Vancouver's 'Films You Can Feel' campaign for Vancouver Aquarium's 4D theatre launch has Taylor Made Media layering executions across transit, theatre, radio and print to give commuters a sense of the multidimensional. 


Mega media buys are in the works to promote Western Canada’s first and only 4D theatre. To help introduce BC Lower Mainland residents to Vancouver Aquarium’s newest attraction – the 4D Experience show – a massive Films You Can Feel campaign created by TAXI Vancouver is going big and bold to immerse commuters into the epic experience.

‘We needed to convey a multi-dimensional experience in traditional advertising media that would let visitors know this was something new and compelling that they couldn’t experience anywhere else,’ says Sarah Kirby Yung, VP, marketing and communications at the Vancouver Aquarium. ‘The campaign had to inform, create excitement, and still provide a thematic link to the Vancouver Aquarium’s brand and the aquatic world.’

To help generate buzz around the 4D Experience launch, the campaign targets families and teens via transit, radio, theatre ads, and free dailies, all handled by Vancouver-based Taylor Made Media. The effort runs through November across the Lower Mainland.

‘We knew that the biggest challenge was going to be communicating what the 4th Dimension was exactly,’ Michael Mayes, CD at TAXI Vancouver tells MiC. ‘So we decided to use the media as inventively as we could to demonstrate the idea of Films You Can Feel.’ In radio, he explains, they encouraged people to try to create their own 4D experience while listening, and in cinema it appears as though a manta ray has swam off the screen and into the theater. Meanwhile, sky train sides make it look like passengers are immersed in water. ‘With the media that we couldn’t break barriers with, we showed in-theater images mixed with experiential elements from nature,’ says Mayes. ‘We know it’s hard to get anyone’s attention, so we wanted each piece to work as tightly with the media space as it could, with a strong idea, rather than use media as wall paper and repeat the same concept over and over.’

A Skytrain station domination package, the campaign’s anchor, features layers of advertising at several high traffic stations in the city with eye-catching wall murals in key stations like rider-heavy Metrotown and Waterfront, a hub for seabus, west coast express and helijet, as well as Granville where a giant 68′ x 8′ mural at Granville Station is also featured. Transit coverage also spanned the exterior of the Skytrip trains, its interior posters, as well as the LCD screens on its platforms, covering off the whole Skytrain network which extends into the family-rich suburbs. (The Skystrips are also visible to street traffic and pedestrians as the trains travel on their routes.) Seat drops on the West Coast Express, a commuter express train, distributed a total of 5500 print pieces.

Virgin Radio is also on board as a key radio partner in the campaign, and will have 30 sec spots featured on The Beat and QMFM – both popular with local families. The Aquarium is also sponsoring the ‘Bug’d’ promotion featuring 400 promo spots as well as an online presence running throughout September.

Throughout the Lower Mainland, 15-second digital pre show ads will be featured in 23 theatres and scheduled to run up to seven minutes prior to the show start, which reaches the greatest amount of people, says Brandi Pratt, media director at Taylor Made Media. ‘They are also significantly more affordable than advertising after the house lights go down.’ In addition to the pre show ads, giant 10′ x 20′ banners in high traffic locations at the Scotiabank Theatre in Vancouver and the Colossus Langley theatre are also featured.

In print, two-page front cover wraps of 24 Hours Vancouver are currently running and include the outside front cover and inside front cover of the paper. ‘It’s big and bold which meets our impact objective, yet is more affordable than a four page wrap, which includes the outside cover as well,’ adds Pratt.

‘The challenge was reaching teens, who have less traditional media habits,’ Pratt tells MiC. ‘We addressed this by reaching them where they’re living their lives – on the skytrain, at the downtown skytrain stations, in the movie theatres, and on the radio.’