Smart Argentina uses ASCII art in first animated Twitter commercial

Smart Argentina uses ASCII art in first animated Twitter commercial

Summary: Perhaps ASCII art might just start to make a comeback thanks to this clever animated Twitter ad from Smart Cars.

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The team at Smart Argentina have completely nailed creative Twitter advertising with this very clever Twitter ad campaign.

The team created a Twitter account for the  @smartArg campaign and created the 'First Twitter commercial, an animation generated with Tweets only '.

In the advertisement, which works like a flip book animation, an ASCII version of a Smart car, the tiny vehicle, designed for the city is seen driving through tunnels, past factories, smiling buildings and churches. People turn to look at the car as it drives down the street. It then reverses into a parking space which is too small for other vehicles.

Credit: YouTube

Creating the animation sequence, once designed seems simple enough. From the 23rd to the 25th March over 450 separate tweets consisting of ASCII art were sent. Each 140 character Tweet represents a single frame in the finished animation.

If you are a Mac user, you can see the animated flipbook sequence by scrolling down Smart Argentina's Twitter feed. PC users can see The finished SmartArg ad on YouTube or try the J and K buttons to scroll using Chrome.

BBDO created the ad for Smart Argentina. Pablo Tajer, Director of Interactive experiences at BBDO said:

"We have found a new way to use the medium; we redefined and converted a Twitter profile into an animation system. This, associated with the conceptual commercial and with a brand which also redefines the idea of automobiles gives, as a result a piece of work that we are very happy with."

Whilst the isolated tweets mean nothing to SmartArg's Twitter followers it could mean much more to advertisers. The creative has definitely redefined the way that agencies could now think about the use of Twitter for advertising through the feed.

Perhaps ASCII art will be making a comeback after all...

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2 comments
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  • Mac users

    Can you please explain to me why you think Mac users can't click the YouTube link!!!
    .DeusExMachina.
    • Optimum streaming..

      Mac users can actually see the animation directly through the Twitter UI, and it looks fantastic. It does not animate on a PC.
      For users that can not see the animation at all - even through Chrome - there is always the YouTube link :-)
      Eileenb