Scooter Head: Guerilla Marketing Gone Horribly Right?
Looking at Vespa's new scooter head ads, which popped up at the intersection of Richmond St. W and Peter St., I can't help but laugh. It's the symbolism that gets me.
The posters are human sized cutouts with an image of your average downtown hipster. One exception, which you see above, is that their heads share a remarkable resemblance to the new Vespa S.
The symbolism that deserves a few chuckles is fairly simple. The idea that we can exchange our faces and minds with a product is pretty indicative of our culture. We are defined by the products we wear, ride/drive and live in. Our days are occupied with earning the funds to buy more products (maybe earning wasn't the right word). Our goals revolve around getting that next product and upping our neighbour or fitting into the community of people who happen to own the same thing.
This isn't to say that each person's contribution to the overall society is lessened or ignored, but let's face it, we're consumers. That's what our lives and jobs revolve around.
In the end, I think Vespa is just being honest about it. They want you to buy their product to further your personal identity. By buying one of their scooters, you become a scooter rider, even better to some, a Vespa rider. Now you're hip and cool and can wear clothes like the poster. Of course, you have to buy more products to complete your new image.
So what do you think about this ad? The trend toward guerilla marketing in general? Does advertising masquerading as street art work for you?
Photo by Jon Currie
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