Smart’s truthful experiential test-drive
If you were challenged to take a lie detector test in front of your mother, would you be brave enough to answer every question truthfully?
In a quirky stunt to promote their Fortwo Cabrio car, automobile company Smart invited members of the public to test drive the car on a specialist track. But there was a twist: they had to take an embarrassing lie detector test whilst driving it.
Each driver was hooked up with wires attached to a lie detector machine in the vehicle. As they drove around the track, a screen on the machine projected personal questions which the driver had five seconds to answer. For added embarrassment, the participants had to answer the questions whilst sitting next to their best friend, partner or family member.
As they spoke, the lie detector measured their heart rate to determine the truth of their answers. After they answered each question, the screen revealed if their answer was true or a lie. If they lied, the screen flashed red, the car roof closed and the test drive was over. The couple whose roof stayed open the longest, won.
A few safe questions kicked it off: ‘Do you like this car?’, ‘Have you ever googled yourself?’ ‘Have you ever posed in front of the mirror like a bodybuilder?’
But quickly the questions took a more embarrassing turn: ‘Do you think that women find you more attractive than your friend?’, ‘Do you check your ex’s profiles on Facebook once in a while?’ and even ‘Do you like your girlfriend’s mother?’
Forced to answer the embarrassing questions in front of their loved ones, the participants answered in varying degrees of honesty, with hilarious consequences.
See the brave participants take on the lie detector:
Similar to Smart’s experiential parallel parking prank, this shows how a humorous and light-hearted stunt can deliver a memorable brand experience.
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.