The future of advertising is here! How one colorful lights show captured the attention of many consumers! [Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing]
QR (Quick Response) codes are widely used in China.
Citizens use these codes for ALMOST everything―adding friends on messaging apps, paying for groceries, ordering at restaurants, and many more.
Additionally, when the COVID-19 pandemic hit the country, China’s local governments assigned colored QR codes to citizens to manage the public health crisis.
Is there anything else we haven’t mentioned yet?
In China, QR codes are also used by businesses as part of their marketing strategy.
Here’s how two companies reinvented their ways to promote their products using this tool…
Cygames is a Japanese video game development studio that was established in 2011. It is known for developing mobile and web browser video games such as:
- The Rage of Bahamut
- Idolmaster Cinderella Girls
- Disney Fantasy Quest
- Knights of Glory
- Granblue Fantasy
… and many more.
Meanwhile, Bilibili is a Chinese video sharing website headquartered in Shanghai. Its main expertise involves animation, comics, and games (ACG).
On April 17, 2021, these companies partnered together to create a “Blade Runner-like cinematic experience” for video game players.
This was in line with the first year anniversary of the China release of the role-playing game, “Princess Connect! Re: Dive.”
How did Cygames and Bilibili celebrate and market this event to the Chinese market?
Through QR codes!
As mentioned earlier, these codes are everywhere in China. That’s why both companies took advantage of this tool to connect with millions of consumers.
… but this wasn’t just any ordinary QR code.
What Cygames and Bilibili did was a QR code drone show!
By enlisting the services of drone provider EHCross, the companies kickstarted their commemorative anniversary show for Princess Connect! Re: Dive by taking 1,500 LED drones up the skies at dusk.
The place where this was conducted?
At the iconic The Bund, a waterfront area and protected historical district in Central Shanghai!
Trivia: The average foot traffic in The Bund is around 2 million per day―the highest so far in China!
This was probably the reason why Cygames and Bilibili chose the place to conduct their Guerrilla Marketing stunt.
So… what were the highlights of the event?
Once the light show drones synchronically began their flight, they took the form of Princess Connect! Re: Dive’s characters like Labyrista, Hiyori, Chika, and Kyuoka.
The colorful lights captured the attention of passersby, causing them to stop whatever they were doing to watch and take photos and videos of the show.
The drone formations narrated how the video game works, particularly how the heroes fight the monsters they encounter at each level.
At the end of the show, the drones further amused spectators by slowly gathering at the center of the sky and forming a scannable QR code that consumers can scan with their smartphones.
Scanning the code directed consumers to Princess Connect! Re: Dive’s app, which they could download for FREE!
If there’s one word that can describe this Guerrilla Marketing strategy, it’s this:
QR codes are central to Cygames and Bilibili’s marketing campaign for Princess Connect! Re: Dive.
In fact, when the game debuted in China last year, Bilibili printed QR codes that were placed across Shanghai’s bus stop billboards and…
… similar to the giant QR code drone marketing at The Bund, a large QR code was also set up at Bilibili’s own office building!
This was in accordance with Bilibili CEO Chen Rui’s instructions to make the marketing collateral for the game “big and camera-friendly.”
Was Cygames and Bilibili’s QR Code Drone Marketing Effective?
The marketing stunt became the main talk in Chinese social media―and even around the world!
A lot of people talked about how amazed they were that the drones successfully formed into a scannable QR code and how this could be the “future of advertising.”
In just 6 days, the uploaded video of the drone show on YouTube gained more than 100,000 views and on Twitter, the post had over 72,000 likes and 32,000 shares.
On Facebook, the post about the marketing stunt garnered more than 99,000 likes, 10,000 comments, and 139,000 shares.
These numbers show how the QR code drone marketing compelled consumers all over the world to interact with Cygames and Bilibili’s campaign―whether by downloading the game or sharing content about the Guerrilla Marketing strategy!
The event also broke the Guinness World Record as “The Most Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) Airborne Simultaneously” and gained coverage from some media companies such as the South China Morning Post, The Patent, SupChina, etc.
Lastly, Cygames and Bilibili’s analytics showed that over 1 million scans of the QR code drone show led to 300,000 downloads of Princess Connect! Re: Dive!
This shows how QR codes offer a convenient way to connect with consumers and compel them to act, especially in countries where this tool is highly used.
Cygames and Bilibili’s drone show sets a new “groundbreaking marketing goals standard” in promoting products and services to consumers.
Just like these companies, the future of your brand’s marketing lies within your creative, imaginative thoughts and ability to think outside the box.
Don’t miss out on opportunities to use new technologies to promote your business and interact with your target market!
Make the most out of your brand’s available resources and create your own groundbreaking Guerrilla Marketing campaign that consumers will always remember!
About The Dynamic Marketing Communiqué’s
“Fridays: Gorillas of Guerrilla Marketing”
Jay Conrad Levinson (1984) said that Guerrilla Marketing “works because it’s simple to appreciate, easy to execute, and inexpensive.”
Guerrilla Marketing is unconventional.
Looking beyond the traditional ways of advertising, marketers, and advertisers need to spice things up in order for their brand to have campaigns that not only make an impact but also stick to their target market’s mind.
Guerrilla Marketing usually aims to have direct contact with consumers.
This type of direct contact should spark an emotional reaction that leads to consumers effectively remembering the brand.
It’s about making a big impression and making that impression last a long time (if not forever).
Guerrilla Marketing can be inexpensive.
The effect of this is being able to create a buzz around the brand, and the strategy used to market it. Almost everything is passed around through word-of-mouth.
Word-of-mouth is one of the greatest outcomes and it usually doesn’t cost anything.
This is every business’ or brand’s dream!
Every Friday, we publish tips, examples, and other useful content on unconventional ways of marketing and promotion.
Learn more about how to grab your target market’s attention and make an amazing first and lasting impression without having to spend a lot of money.
Businesses don’t really need to spend much for a guerrilla campaign. You do not need a big budget to be successful. You just need creativity and a good imagination.
Hope you’ve found this week’s guerrilla marketing insight interesting and helpful.
Stay tuned for next Friday’s Gorillas of Guerrilla!
Head of Marketing
Valens Dynamic Marketing Capabilities
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