Spotted! HSBC ads that help plants grow

Timed to coincide with COP26, the OOH ads are backed by a light that encourages chlorophyll absorption and photosynthesis.

Digital boards in bus shelters and LinkNYC screens across New York were set to display blue light. Research has shown that light from the lower end of the visible light spectrum can encourage plant growth in the vegetative stage by motivating chlorophyll absorption and photosynthesis.

The boards were chosen for their proximity to green spaces and vegetation in the city, which can sometimes be in short supply.

The ads are meant to coincide with the 26th United Nations Climate Change Conference (known as COP26), when conversations about measures governments are planning to implement to tackle climate change and sustainability are at the forefront. It also aligns with HSBC’s own climate goals, which include contributing $1 trillion USD globally to helping clients achieve their net-zero carbon goals.

The campaign was created by Wunderman Thompson Canada, the bank’s creative agency north of the border.

“To get people’s attention, we needed to show rather than tell,” says Ari Elkouby, the agency’s ECD. “We had the opportunity to use the media available to bring attention to HSBC’s global sustainability commitment and create a positive impact for the city of New York.”