Razorfish Gives SXSW Town Bikes With #UseMeLeaveMe

#UseMeLeaveMe

One of the better agency stunts at this year’s SXSW is Razorfish’s #UseMeLeaveMe, a set of 20 GPS-equipped ‘town bikes’ that anyone can take for a spin while they Tweet out fun facts.

The bikes are single speed beach cruisers, which makes them easy to ride for those that haven’t been on two wheels in a while (it’s like riding a bike…) and each one contains a GPS transponder that updates a map in real-time to help SXSW attendees track down a ride.

#UseMeLeaveMe Bike

Once a ride has been claimed, the bike will Tweet out things like where it was taken from, where it was left, if it’s been ridden hard (and if so, how hard), the weather, hellos to other bikes, if one rider is “being douchey”, and other random stuff to keep things interesting. Plus, each bike has its own personality, which is expressed in the words and phrases it Tweets with.

Once a rider hops on, they’re encouraged to Tweet things about their experience using each bike’s unique #hashtag, and anything goes, as long as you follow the one simple rule: “Just don’t be a jackass.”

There’s also a QR code on each bike to enables… oh, who am I kidding? It’s 2013; no one scans QR codes anymore…

So far, the stunt seems to be going pretty well, with a nice mix of rider Tweets and bike Tweets that keep the conversation worth paying attention to:


No word yet on what happens with the bikes once SXSW is over (a charity donation would be nice…) but it’s a simple idea that could easily be replicated at just about any public event, so hopefully you’ll see this concept riding into a town near you sometime soon.

#UseMeLeaveMe

BMW Makes Direct Mail Exciting Again With The M Press

BMW Print Ad

When I wrote about the need for better direct mail campaigns, one idea I mentioned was to “create a direct mail ad that’s also a unique piece of art”.

No doubt inspired by that idea (probably not) Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners created a direct mail campaign for BMW that included a series of unique art prints, along with the typical sales material, that was mailed to perspective buyers.

To create the prints, they turned a new BMW M6 Coupe into “The M Press”, with a custom rig that would dispense ink above the M6′s tires.

The plan was simple enough: Matt Mullins, the Chief Driving Instructor of the BMW Performance Driving School, drove the car around Blackhawk Farms Raceway in Illinois, and when he drove over areas of the racetrack where pieces of paper had been taped, he would flip a switch to activate the custom ink sprayer, which inked the rear tires and allowed them to leave their mark on the paper below.

To make sure the printing process would deliver the intended results, Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners worked with Classic Color out of Chicago, a digital printing shop that helped mix the inks and create the printing rig that brought the idea to life.

BMW sent the resulting series of “M Prints” to existing M owners and potential owners via a direct mail campaign, and along with the printed ad, recipients could visit a personalized website that would show them the video of how their print was made.

As with most modern campaigns, a crew was also there to create a behind the scenes video, which they then used to tell the story to a wider audience. This helped to not only increase the ROI of the original campaign, but to create a second wave of interest out of a single idea.

By taking a traditional direct mail campaign and finding a fun way to add something special, BMW and Kirshenbaum Bond Senecal + Partners were able to create an ad that’s sure to stand out from every other ad that gets delivered by the USPS.