Monopoly stages amusing experiential property prank
For many of us, a game of Monopoly was the first time in our lives where we encountered money in any real sense. Sadly, most of us swiftly smartened up to the fact that the financial side to the game is far removed from reality; in the real world, there’s no one there to hand out cash just for passing a GO sign. If only.
However, in a recent stunt to promote an updated spin on the classic board game, Ultimate Banking, Monopoly incorporated its game rules into a real-life situation when it targeted a group of house-hunters.
The activation saw Monopoly transform a shop in Milan into an estate agency named Ultimate Estate, complete with a list of available properties and an enthusiastic salesman.
But what customers failed to notice was that the makeshift agency was filled with subtle clues that all was not as it should be, including pictures of the classic toy houses from the game, the arrow from the famous GO sign, and what should have been the real giveaway: receiving a ‘gift’ of €500 for simply walking through the door.
Would-be home-owners soon became suspicious when told about bizarre conditions, such as if they were to buy a property while the owner was in jail, they would have to consent to paying the bail money and agree to the owner living with them for 2 months!
When customers asked for more information, the pretend sales man shocked them by revealing the board game, a hidden cameraman, and the famous Monopoly character Rich Uncle Pennybags; all of the ingredients for a light-hearted and very memorable prank.
The motivation behind the campaign was the tagline for the new game, ‘Monopoly’s never been so real’, with players now having to wrestle with credit cards and sudden value changes.
This amusing experiential campaign brings a playful touch to a scenario that many adults are all-too-familiar with. It reminds us of Record Bank’s brand experience which replaced usual bank advisors with children.
With nearly 30 years of marketing experience, both client and agency side, I’ve acquired a rare perspective on brands and business: I believe you have to challenge things creatively if you want to grow sales. Consumer technology is reshaping our world, and it’s only the great brands that stay on the crest.