This Outdoor Ad Only Makes Sense Because of Where It’s Placed

EasyJet reflects on Bordeaux in work from Buzzman

Headshot of David Griner

A great outdoor ad is one that’s so clever and perfectly positioned, it makes you wonder why you don’t see the same approach in almost every city on Earth.

That’s certainly the case with French agency Buzzman’s new work for EasyJet. An out-of-home ad on display all this month in the city of Bordeaux features inverted and upside-down text that can only be read in the ad’s reflection in the Garonne River.

The ad’s message in French, “Bordelais, Le Ciel Est A Vos Pieds,” means “People of Bordeaux, the sky is at your feet,” though the ad’s official English translation says “the sky is at your fingertips.”

The rest of the ad’s copy says, “Plus de 30 destinations au depart de Bordeaux,” or, “More than 30 destinations can be reached from Bordeaux.”

The ad runs along both sides of a corner of Bordeaux’s Place de la Bourse, covering scaffolding being used for restoration of the iconic building constructed in the 1700s.

While this approach has surely been used by outdoor advertisers before, none immediately come to mind. (But, fellow ad nerds, hit me on Twitter with any good examples you’re aware of.) A few years back, a mural in Lithuania got some press for its artist’s similar approach, but the only thing really being advertised was the local art festival. The reflection-only message also reminds me of a 2008 Australian ad for McDonald’s where the golden arches only appeared when reflected in glass at night.

In addition to the English version of the EasyJet ad above, here’s another look at how the ad is being packaged for audiences outside Bordeaux:

@griner David Griner is creative and innovation editor at Adweek and host of Adweek's podcast, "Yeah, That's Probably an Ad."