Advertising is often perceived as simply marketing a company or concept, but a recent project for the University of Engineering and Technology (UTEC) in Peru offered a glimpse of how advertising can be used to both promote a brand and solve an actual problem. DirectMarketingNews.com chronicled the steps involved in achieving these two worthy goals.
When the UTEC was looking to increase awareness for the school and boost the appeal of the engineering field in general, they enlisted the advertising acumen of Mayo Draftfcb to create a compelling advertising campaign. Inspiration for the campaign came from the unlikely place of a national drinking water problem.
The dilemma was that Lima, Peru is the second-largest capital city in the world but it’s also located in a coastal desert. Despite the fact that the humidity is around 98 percent, the region’s rainfall is less than one-inch per year. This means that little fresh water is available for residents to drink and the small amount that is accessible is unsuitable because it’s highly polluted. This national problem became the solution for UTEC’s advertising approach.
The result was the production of a billboard designed to both produce drinkable water out of the humidity in the air and increase enrollment at the school for the 2013 academic year. The billboard showed young students using practical engineering methods to resolve this water crisis. It was also intended to create a physical representation of UTEC’s “Ingenuity In Action” campaign, which was an initiative to develop young students into qualified professionals who use technology and innovation to help sustain development in Peru.
In order to gain maximum exposure among the targeted young-adult audience, the billboard was strategically placed on a busy road to the beach during the summer season from December 2012 through February 2013.
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The advertising campaign proved extremely successful and generated measurable results. The billboard has already produced more than 9,000 liters of water for families in Bujama and nearby towns in only a few months. It has also increased enrollment at UTEC by 28 percent and a video about the project posted on YouTube received more than 300,000 views in less than two weeks.
Overall, it shows how advertising and technology are increasingly working together to make a real difference and deliver real-life results.
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