People are busy. People have places to be and things to do. But, that doesn’t mean we should risk our lives by ignoring “Don’t Walk” signs. Those 30 extra seconds that you spend waiting for the light to change could mean your life. We’ve all done it. Crossed the street before the light has changed, signaling that it is safe to do so. But what if a car came out of nowhere, or what if you though it was safe to cross but it wasn’t? Or what if a car had to stop short to avoid hitting you but ended up causing an accident with the car behind it?
11.4 percent of traffic deaths are pedestrians. A lot of this has to do with a failure to understand when it is appropriate to cross the street, or jaywalking. Even one death due to this cause, is one too many. So how do you get people to actually follow the little man who tells us when it’s safe and not safe to walk?
Recently, Smart Car created a spot in which they tackled just that! Set at a busy intersection in Portugal, the video opens up featuring people crossing the street in dangerous fashions. One man on a bike, weaving across traffic…one couple dodging in front of a bus. They capture our attention right from the start by showcasing the problem. Then they ask “But what if we made waiting more entertaining?”
Smart Car designed a booth that was directly linked to the traffic light. People would go into the booth, equipped with video cameras, and dance around. This feed was connected to the walk man image and would play back what was happening real time!
The result…a goofy dancing little man for your entertainment while you waited safely for the light to change. Plenty of people participated and enjoyed the experience, and Smart Car got people to wait until it was safe to cross the street. A whopping 81 percent more people waited at the stoplight. Definitely a success for what Smart Car was trying to achieve.
I think that this spot is a great example of how popular brands can use their position in the public eye to be a good influence. Successful brands can contribute to society and do good for people by raising awareness on important issues. I have always admired and trusted brands that aim to do this, and make a connection with their consumers. I’d say Smart Car hit it out of the park with this one, and the execution of the video is well designed and entertaining too! *Clicking “like” button now*
Heinonen, J., & Eck, J. (n.d.). Center for Problem-Oriented Policing. Retrieved September 16, 2014.
Nudd, T. (n.d.). Smart Car Makes Crosswalks Safer (and More Fun) With Dancing ‘Don’t Walk’ Guy. Retrieved September 16, 2014.