Idea of The Week: Now ‘this’ is an eye-catcher!

>The Situation:

Last week, I talked about communities branding themselves as having “The World’s Biggest Hockey Stick,” (or Easter Egg, or Fly Rod) – and I mentioned a western apparel store that boasts “The World’s Largest Cowboy Boot” – standing right outside its door. Today, another example, this time closer to home. If you live in the Vancouver area, you’ve seen it. And the first time you saw it, you couldn’t believe your eyes. ‘It’ is a sign painter finishing off a huge message on the outside wall of the D.Y.I. (Do It Yourself) Cabinet Warehouse, in the Vancouver suburb of Burnaby. (Scroll down for a look at the photos).

>The Idea:

Now the trick to this bit of visual marketing is the art of illusion. Right. That’s not a sign painter at all. It’s a mannequin posing as a painter. And you can see this because the mannequin’s head is hairless (in this close up photo). But for traffic driving by, the illusion works. This really looks like a sign painter in action – and it’s been making heads turn for years. Its popularity is also proven by the fact that it’s been stolen – at least twice that I know of. And of course, that has drawn media attention as well. Brilliant.

>The Risk:

Well, the mannequin isn’t free (or even cheap). So there is a risk that it will be stolen – again – and will have to be replaced again.

>The Reward:

But. The virtual sign painter generates so much attention (and so much traffic that converts to sales), that it’s obviously worth the risk.

>The Call to Action:

This item reminds me of the landscaping service that parks a huge “STOP” sign next to the curb where they’re working – followed by the words, “and ask us about our discount special for doing other work in the neighborhood.” (Or words to that effect). In other words, the idea of creating an eye-catcher (or traffic-stopper) is not limited to a town or a retail operation. In fact, just about anyone can do it – one way or another. Gotcha thinkin?

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