From CP+B and VW, Hidden Cams in a NYC Cab

  |  July 5, 2006   |  Comments

The "Gypsy Cab Project" documents, via dashboard-mounted cameras, "all the things that make urban driving truly unique."

In the catalog of VW-made compact cars from the 70s, the Rabbit may not be as iconic a vehicle as the Beetle was, but that doesn't mean a reborn version of it won't hop off dealer lots.

At least that's what the carmaker hopes as it prepares to re-release the bunny in 2007. As part of its early marketing efforts for the model, creative agency of record Crispin Porter + Bogusky has launched a video-rich site meant to engage Web users and position the Rabbit as an ideal vehicle for city drivers.

The Gypsy Cab Project centers around Steve, "a filmmaker from Colorado who has never driven in New York," and his task of driving around the city in a Rabbit fitted out like a cab while offering free rides to strangers. The project, the goal of which is to pick up 100 fares in two weeks, describes itself as "an attempt to uncover and document (on hidden cameras) all the things that make urban driving truly unique."

Via two dashboard-mounted cameras, voyeuristic site visitors can watch Steve's "favorite fares," including two girls from Switzerland freewheeling around the city and a West Virginia family whose patriarch spits tobacco juice out the window.

"This is a cultural experiment to learn about city driving," said CP+B Creative Director Rob Strasberg, who added that the effort has received minimal promotional support. "We’re running ads in NYC pubs like TimeOut and on Web banners. Mostly it's word of mouth and word of Web."

Since the project started, CP+B has hired Steve as an in-house director, editor and "comedian." The company discovered him after learning of his Denver cable access TV show, in which he interviewed local people of interest in his pick-up.

And what of the New York Taxi and Limousine Commission? Did it have any objection to the project? Not a problem, said Strasberg. "The rides were for free so there wasn't any conflict."

ClickZ Live Chicago Join the Industry's Leading eCommerce & Direct Marketing Experts in Chicago
ClickZ Live Chicago (Nov 3-6) will deliver over 50 sessions across 4 days and 10 individual tracks, including Data-Driven Marketing, Social, Mobile, Display, Search and Email. Check out the full agenda and register by Friday, Oct 3 to take advantage of Early Bird Rates!

ABOUT THE AUTHOR

Zachary Rodgers

Until March 2012, Zach Rodgers was managing editor of ClickZ's award-winning coverage of news and trends in digital marketing. He reported on the rise of web companies, data markets, ad technologies, and government Internet policy, among other subjects. 

COMMENTSCommenting policy

comments powered by Disqus

ClickZ Today is our #1 newsletter.
Get a daily dose of digital marketing.

COMMENTS

UPCOMING EVENTS

Featured White Papers

IBM: Social Analytics - The Science Behind Social Media Marketing

IBM Social Analytics: The Science Behind Social Media Marketing
80% of internet users say they prefer to connect with brands via Facebook. 65% of social media users say they use it to learn more about brands, products and services. Learn about how to find more about customers' attitudes, preferences and buying habits from what they say on social media channels.

Marin Software: The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising

The Multiplier Effect of Integrating Search & Social Advertising
Latest research reveals 68% higher revenue per conversion for marketers who integrate their search & social advertising. In addition to the research results, this whitepaper also outlines 5 strategies and 15 tactics you can use to better integrate your search and social campaigns.

Resources

Jobs

    • Digital Marketing Analyst
      Digital Marketing Analyst (GovLoop) - Washington D.C.Are you passionate about audience acquisition? Love effective copy and amazingly effective...
    • Product Specialist
      Product Specialist (Agora Inc. ) - BaltimoreDescription: The Product Specialist is hyper-focused on the customer experience and ensures that our...
    • Partnerships Senior Coordinator
      Partnerships Senior Coordinator (Zappos.com, Inc.) - Las VegasZappos IP, Inc. is looking for a Partnerships Senior Coordinator! Why join us? Our...