In a media first, charity the MicroLoan Foundation has initiated an innovative digital out of home poster that integrates the physical world with the digital. The unique coin operated poster, at Westfield London's Southern Terrace, allows passers-by to drop their change into a real coin box and then watch their exact denomination of coins roll through the digital billboard.
Created by DLKW Lowe, with production and creative technology by Grand Visual, the campaign is based on an old fashioned charity coin box where you watch your coins roll past a static scene and into the tin. In this reincarnation, each real donation instantly appears on the digital screen and rolls through it, telling the story of how it transforms lives as it goes.
MicroLoan Foundation enables women in Africa to help themselves out of poverty, by providing small loans, mentoring and training to help them set up their own small businesses. Once their businesses are up and running the women pay back their loans, and the money is then used to provide more loans. So every donation keeps on giving, over and over again.
Grand Visual was responsible for the animation and interactive development, as well as the mechanism to integrate the physical coin drop with the on-screen digital creative. A currency detector was used to recognise all UK coin denominations above 5p and then to output an electronic pulse code for each value. An Arduino board interprets the incoming code and sends it to a database so that the interactive creative can read and deliver the matching digital coin to run through the creative execution.
Frances Leach & Christopher Bowsher, the team at DLKW Lowe who created the campaign, said “We've always been fascinated by the blurring of the physical and digital worlds, and it was a great opportunity to re-invent something that we loved as kids. Hopefully the digital angle will inspire a younger generation to engage with the charity, meaning more donations.”
Dan Dawson, Creative & Technology Director at Grand Visual commented: “This bespoke digital outdoor campaign combines an old school mechanical device with electronics and interactive media for a rich and rewarding experience on a grand scale. The creative tells the story about how each donation is used by MicroLoan to help change lives in Africa”.
Sara Bowcutt, Head of Fundraising at MicroLoan Foundation, said: ““The incredible pro-bono support that we’ve received from DLKW Lowe and Grand Visual will enable us to raise vital awareness and money in the UK which ultimately helps MicroLoan support more women in Africa”.
Project name: MicroLoan Charity Box
Client: Sara Bowcutt Head of Fundraising, MicroLoan Foundation
Creative agency: DLKW Lowe
Art Director: Christopher Bowsher
Copywriter: Frances Leach
Creative Directors: Christian Sewell and Andy McAnaney
Exec Creative Directors: Richard Denney and Dave Henderson
Head of Design: Jamie Craven
Account Team: Gabi Gribbin and Emma Donne
Digital Project Director: Steven Hart
Art Buyer: Bel January
Creative Technology & Digital Production: Grand Visual
Creative Technology Director: Dan Dawson (GV)
Digital Producers : Tim Last and Debbie Ferguson (GV)
Engineering : Jon Jones and Mike Farrance (GV)
Lead Developer : Chris Churn (GV)
Animation : Kristian Brace (GV)
Sound design: Wave
Illustrator: Giordano Poloni
Illustrator’s agent: Agency Rush
Exposure: Southern Terrace, Westfield London, (Ocean Outdoor site)
Date: 22nd March 2013