Everybody loves ball! Everybody plays ball! Interactive advertising at its best.

The world of advertising and branding has gone so dynamic that it appears to be an endless place of magic. I am so sure one of these days we would be able to live in the world of our products and experience it fully before buying it! Everywhere you go around the world, shopping malls, retail spaces, movie theatres and clubs, there are so many creative uses of lighting, colors and branding techniques. Many organizations have realized that you just can’t throw your products at your customers anymore. There are too many products in the market and choosing a product to buy has almost become like choosing a best friend. The thing is, we don’t necessarily choose our best friends. They become our best friends over a period of time because we have come to experience them, understand them and would choose them if given another opportunity. So I have come to respect those organizations that have recognized how to make friends. ESPN understands that the relationship between them and their customers is their love for football. So for people who don’t play football but watch, ESPN gave them an opportunity to “catch the ball”.
The “Is It Monday Yet?” campaign for Monday Night Football on ESPN was about finding entertaining and unexpected ways to remind football fans about the upcoming Monday night match-up. As the centerpiece of the 2009 integrated, multiplatform effort, storefronts in New York, Chicago and Boston were outfitted with interactive touchscreens utilizing gesture recognition technology, so passersby could stand in front of the store windows and try to catch consecutive footballs “thrown” at them by a virtual quarterback. The game used a computer vision based NUI (natural user interface) and, based on the user’s motion of “catching a ball,” the system would determine whether or not the pass was successful.
“ESPN MNF Interactive Storefront “The key to this installation’s success is that everyone, even non-fans, can get excited about catching a football. So many interactive storefronts confuse users with complex interactions but the simplicity of this one amps-up the crowd.” —Rachel Pasqua
“Advertising should be more than passive especially when it’s about sports. Ambient interactive pieces like this one turn an affinity or interest into street theater. It’s a great example to replicate, I can’t wait to see what we get in five years.” —Glen Sheehan
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