Creative in association withGear Seven

Bridgestone Transforms Football Billboards into Safety Barriers for Reporters and Photographers

Advertising Agency
São Paulo, Brazil
VMLY&R Brazil helps the tire manufacturer protect those on the sidelines from possible accidents
The life of the journalists, photographic reporters, and cameramen who work on the sidelines of soccer fields is not easy by any stretch. Besides the concentration and physical fitness needed in order to capture the best angles of the game, they have to be extremely agile to avoid being hit by a ball or run over by a player. And that is Bridgestone Barrier’s main purpose: to protect these professionals and their equipment from the occasional accident. This innovative initiative, the brainchild of VMLY&R, is the first in a series of actions that Bridgestone, the world’s largest tire manufacturer, will undertake throughout the year to activate the sponsorship of CONMEBOL Libertadores 2019 Tournament.

Bridgestone, which has just renewed the sponsorship of Latin America’s most important soccer tournament until 2022 and has extended their partnership to the South American CONMEBOL championship, continues its strategy of investing in innovations that bring closer together customers and their passions, such as soccer. For the first time ever, a static, conventional billboard will become a tire barrier. The brand’s marketing action will be seen in the field today, during the game between Flamengo and Bolivia’s San Jose at Maracana stadium, in Rio de Janeiro. 

“The tire is the only point of contact between the vehicle and the ground and is an essential safety item. The action will also reinforce other traits of the brand, such as performance and technology. With this unprecedented initiative, we are bringing our product into the field to protect and assist journalists, as we do with our clients and their passions”, remarks Oduvaldo Viana, Bridgestone’s marketing director.

Bridgestone Barrier has undergone several tests to ensure it is properly held in place, in compliance with all of CONMEBOL’s safety criteria. The device will have a metallic structure with the same dimensions as the current static billboards and a “band” consisting of 45 tires, where the Bridgestone brand will be printed. 

“Instead of using third-party technology to make a digital billboard, we have decided to bet on a 100% analogical billboard, using our client’s own cutting-edge technology – their superior tire quality – and create a truly unprecedented field activation that will help tell Bridgestone’s sponsorship apart from all the others”, states Adriano Abdalla, VML’s creative VP.

To introduce the “Bridgestone Barrier”, was produced a film that features testimonials from journalists Lara Mota, Leo Lucas and Roman Laurito, from photographer Flavio Hopp, and from cameraman Carlos Varela, who describe their experiences s during the coverage of soccer games, highlighting the importance of safety.

To increase the visibility generated by the TV broadcasts, during the match, there will be activations with soccer influencers in social media, In addition, branded content actions are also planned to promote the Bridgestone Barrier on sports TV shows. The integrated communication strategy to promote the company’s activations, including the Bridgestone Barrier, also includes a series of activations to diversified audiences in diversified media, in addition to the company’s digital channels.
Agency / Creative
Post Production / VFX
Music / Sound