Personal space is no laughing matter in Finland. When Finns wait for their buses, the crowd typically disperses as much as humanly possible.
One would have to see it to believe it. And many have, as evidenced by the number of pictures circulating online. Shot by amused passers-by, they feature a typical morning or evening commute scene, with Finns standing at regular intervals avoiding all interaction.
These Internet memes have now inspired advertising. Nissan’s Nordic Europe division uses the bus stop scenes to highlight their Automatic Distance Control that regulates safety distance on the road.
“The people standing at the bus stop are a perfect match to represent Nissan’s safety feature. Both control distance automatically,” says Creative Director Erno Reinikainen at TBWA\Helsinki, Nissan’s advertising agency in Finland. “This everyday situation is something all Finns can relate to,” he continues.
Local Touch as an Advantage
Over the decades, car manufacturers have consolidated to a couple of large alliances. Nissan has joined forces with Renault and Mitsubishi.
In terms of advertising content, worldwide companies such as Nissan need to balance between a uniform, global brand and the needs of different markets. However, the bus-stop frolic demonstrates that tapping into local culture can work wonders.
“I’m glad that we could do a local campaign that has struck a chord with our audience,” says Veera Salo, Marketing Manager at Nissan Nordic Europe.
Emboldened by the campaign, Nissan Nordic Europe plans to keep on exploring the possibilities of more local advertising.
“Year in and year out, Nissan is one of Finland’s best-selling car brands. We want to nurture and improve this relationship through campaigns that are based on local insights,” Reinikainen concludes.