British Airways has introduced interactive billboard’s into London which identifies planes which are currently flying overhead.

The campaign named ‘Look Up’ features a young child pointing up towards the plane before revealing the flight number and destination the plane has travelled from or heading to.

This clever campaign engages a common human desire to know where an overhead plane is coming from whilst igniting a sense of wonderment as to their own personal future travel plans.

The campaign, developed by Ogilvy 12th Floor boasts using ‘Custom Built Technology’ to track the flights but in reality this type of tracking equipment can be built using cheap off-the-shelf gadgets. Here is an example of amateur enthusiasts using this easily accessible technology to monitor the data that is sent between aircrafts and ground control.

Brands successfully utilizing the use of interactive billboards are remaining on-brand and not letting the lure of offering a ‘wow’ experience drown out meaningful brand communication.

For example, IBM have utilised interactive billboards to promote their goal of building a ‘smarter planet’.

Within the retail industry, IBM has used these billboards to communicate the responsiveness of IBM technology to common retail inventory ordering issues.

The billboard simply changes it’s colour to match the clothing of the person viewing in real-time, highlighting the ‘responsive’ nature of IBM technology.

As shown with the amateur flight tracking video, this ready available technology and their user manuals (Youtube, Tech Blogs) are accessible to the masses. It’s the creative ways in which they are adopted and deployed that make all the difference between a well crafted branding experience and just a simple, cheap thrill.