Smart cars can park in tight spaces. Tweets are tight spaces for telling stories. Smart, BBDO and LEMURIA have capitalized on these brand characteristics to make this fun and effective animation that turns the auto brand's Argentinean Twitter feed into a stop-motion "commercial" made of 450-plus tweets (of 140 characters or less, naturally).
You can see the final effect on the video LINK below, but it is even better to go to Smart Argentina’s Twitter page sign up and play around. Use the "J" key to scroll forward and "K" to shift into reverse, and watch an animated Smart car (created with ASCII images) travel down a bustling city street and cleverly park between two other vehicles.
Lemuria’s Martin Jalfen talks about the challenges posed by the project. “This was the first time we had undertaken a project of this nature. We had to create an animated narrative where every single frame had to be posted on Twitter and we had just 140 characters to create each frame. Once you start posting the tweets there is no way back, so it was essential to plan the process very carefully. One of the most challenging parts of the project was to develop a simple and very graphic design for the car and the environment, and we had to use the Tweeter font to create everything. Once we had nailed the design and sorted out the technical issues, it was just like working on a traditional 2D animation, creating every frame in sequence. It was great to realize we could create a story with very limited elements and very exciting to see everything starting to come together. From the beginning, it was a very collaborative process with BBDO. When the agency approached us with the idea we said – we don’t know if it will work, but we love it. And it did.”
Lemuria worked closely with BBDO’s interactive department to achieve the user interaction on Twitter. “The “J” key on Twitter is a short cut to a rollover feature, so by pressing it you have continuity between the different tweets which enables you to see the animation. The overall simplicity of the narrative is perfectly engineered for Twitter's cozy confines, providing a roadmap for crafting future campaigns on the micro-blogging service”.