Baffling billboards

Outdoor media owners often claim that one of the main strengths of their medium is that ads are not sandwiched between content and can’t easily be ignored. That’s undoubtedly a positive thing if it’s a good ad, but what if they’re not?  

Mozaik is no stranger to billboard advertising but while sitting at a major Auckland intersection in the StopPress Aston Martin recently, we furrowed our brows at this one, which features the phrase ‘Give us the secret to your food. The Opposition’.

For a while we thought the secret to Mozaik’s food was either stealing the opposition’s recipes or possibly even grinding up its competitors and sprinkling them on. But it turns out it’s meant to be a note from the opposition asking for its secrets, which reminded us of the misunderstood sign on Modern Family (and other syntactic ambiguities).

Right next to Mozaik’s effort is one for ZM, which features the two male hosts Jay and Flynny taking a leaf out of Women Laughing Alone With Salad and indulging in a hearty open-mouthed guffaw alongside their new host Zoe Marshall. The open-mouther may be the best laugh in real life, but it always looks a bit weird in a photo.

Across the road, Samsung’s campaign for its mobile security product Knox, isn’t weird at all. In fact, it features a host of tech advertising cliches. But from a distance, it does look a little bit like the guy is giving everyone the finger, which could be akin to the fictional student campaign for Ryanair, ‘With prices this cheap, shut the fuck up‘. When you’re as big as Samsung, you can probably get away with it. ​

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