Share the Road in London
Transport for London has launched “Share the Road”, an integrated advertising campaign addressing the challenges of using London’s busy streets. The campaign calls for people to change their mind-set from a competitive to a considerate one, and aims to help them rethink their attitudes towards each other. “The Voice of Reason”, shot in black and white, focuses on Londoner Nadine Marshall asking rhetorically why we get so angry with each other when different forms of transport and people clash. As the video unfolds, and the melancholic music begins to play, the film cuts to different scenes of conflict on the streets; from the anger and frustration of a cyclist and motorcyclist, to the simmering rage between a car driver and a group of youths. The campaign is being rolled out across TV, Online, VOD, Social and Mobile platforms, stimulating a shared conversation amongst Londoners.
The Voice of Reason commercial shows a vivid, authentic London – gritty, edgy, yet at the same time possessing a real beauty. As close encounters of a raging kind roll out the narrator advises viewers to “breathe in, breath out, the moment has gone, it’s time to move on,” showcasing the need for London travellers to be more considerate towards one another.
“What is it about these streets that we pound from day to day? They reveal sides of us we barely recognise. Living in London can be stimulating and fun but as with any major city it has its challenges – one of those is travelling around on our busy roads. We all compete for space and as our population grows, the roads get busier and there’s less space to be had. All road users – motorists, cyclists, pedestrians and motorcyclists – are affected by the issues we face today: the pace of traffic and the pace of London life. Sometimes it gets to us all and we lose our cool. But what if we let it go? And leave it behind?”
Chris Macleod, Marketing Director at Transport for London, said: “Since the range and type of road users has grown over the years, we wanted to engage all of London’s travellers to make them stop and think. This campaign, with its different elements, should resonate personally with all individual road users and encourage them to ‘Share the Road’ not to compete for it.”
Elspeth Lynn, Executive Creative Director at M&C Saatchi Group, added: “I didn’t want us to just do an “ad” I wanted us to create a film that truly changes road users’ attitudes. This film is driven by genuine human interaction, and the absurdity of it. It is only by seeing how futile our hostility is on the road, that we’ll realise the need to change it.”
Jungle’s sound designer Jim Griffin was briefed with designing the sound to be “real world” before morphing into an “otherworldly” style – and to compliment the 100 fps shooting style. He achieved this by making the sound indistinct – the viewer sees the aggression on the screen but the audio is muffled and treated, which creates a detachment from the real world. The process of syncing dialogue with this style of visual also lent itself to the sound design – with voices slowed down and then blended with traffic noises to create a particularly edgy atmosphere. This acted as a counterpoint to the poignancy of the music and zen-like delivery of the voice-over.
The Share The Road campaign was developed at M&C Saatchi London by creative director Elspeth Lynn, copywriter Dan McCormack, art director Luke Boggins, creative director for social Michael Jason Hobbs, agency producer Estella Alvares, planners/CSU directors Cressida O’Shea and Stuart Harrison, senior account director Michael Wilton, digital account director Neil Young, working with TFL marketing director Chris MacLeod.
Media was handled at MEC.
Filming was shot by director Yann Demange via Stink with producer Sue Cooke. Editor was Sam Sneade at Speade. Sound was designed by Jim Griffin at Jungle Studios. Post production was done at Framestore.