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Heidi K's Special Delivery

(May 2009) posted on Tue Apr 14, 2009

Citi-Mobile and Victoria's Secret team up.


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Supermodels on billboards are nothing new; in fact, the larger-than-life graphics are the seemingly perfect stage for such larger-than-life celebs. But a supermodel like, say, Heidi Klum driving a billboard? That’s something you don’t see every day.
 

The people of Los Angeles County—specifically those shopping at The Grove on March 3—saw exactly that, as part of a mobile billboard campaign launched by Glendale, California-based Citi-Mobile to promote Victoria’s Secret’s new Perfect One full-coverage bra.
 

Limited Brands, which owns Victoria’s Secret, approached Citi-Moble (citi-mobile.com) looking for something out of the ordinary. “We’ve been growing and doing more direct work with clients. In the past, we sometimes were the middleman, but now clients are bypassing ad agencies to save money. Plus, clients are looking for unique and very finely targeted campaigns, so mobile billboards fit into this,” says Kevin Bartanian, senior account executive for Citi-Mobile.
 

In this case, Limited Brands wanted to give the illusion of Heidi Klum delivering the first Perfect One bra to The Grove store.
 

“We had the idea to wrap [the truck], to give it a black matte finish so it looked more like a cloth than shiny vinyl, and to put actual ads within the graphics,” says Bartanian. “The wrap in all black with the branding info truly made the mobile billboard unit look like a member of the Victoria’s Secret family.”
 

Rather than one of its standard 10 x 22-foot double-sided units, Citi-Mobile chose a 3-D mobile billboard for the job. “The unit worked out better as it provided more space for the wrap, even though the ad space was only 10 x 6 feet for the sides and 6 x 6 feet for the rear,” says Bartanian.
 

Although Citi-Mobile designed the campaign and did the install in-house, the company contracted Traverse City, Michigan-based Britten Banners (brittenbanners.com) to do the printing for its 3-D scrolling mobile billboard units. Britten used its HP Scitex XL 1500 and HP inks, imaging onto its own 13-ounce backlit vinyl. Finishing was done to allow the panels to attach to one another upon install, so that numerous ads could be scrolled for the same client. Production took one day.
 

The advertising campaign lasted two eight-hour days and covered several shopping centers in Los Angeles County. For the campaign highlight, Citi-Mobile’s drivers drove the mobile billboard a few blocks from the Victoria’s Secret store at The Grove. Klum’s limo dropped her off, and she drove the billboard to the entry of the store.
 

The crowd was thrilled, as was the Citi-Mobile team. “The challenging part was to turn it around in less than five days, since [Limited Brands] gave us artwork less than five business days before start,” says Bartanian. “But the campaign was a huge success for the client. Even though it was a short campaign, it was truly one of a kind.”

 


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