Outdoors LED digital billboards are a familiar sight to everyone. However, do you really pay attention to such advertisements when walking through subway underpasses? Will you spend a few seconds of your precious time to stop and look at these ads? Most people simply ignore these ads. Relevant statistics showed that most people only pay 17% of their attention to outdoor ads. And when we say “attention”, we really mean “giving a passing glance”. If we ask commuters if they could remember the contents of these ads and whether they “accept” its contents, this statistic would plummet further.


To turn this situation round in their favor and to support their new black bento box series, FamilyMart sought the service of Viscovery for their subway station digital ads, using image recognition technology to create a new advertising strategy. People who walk past the large LED panel displaying the black bento promotional video can open their WeChat and shake their phone to find locations that support this campaign. They can also take a picture of the chicken leg or bento box, upload it, and receive a coupon for a delicious chicken drumstick bento box once the picture has successfully recognized.


The image of a chicken drumstick is very well accepted. This is why the chicken drumstick bento box has been selected as the leading promotional element for the black bento series. The creative image recognition strategy allows one to simply take a picture of the chicken drumstick bento with their cellphone and bring it home, and proved to be extremely popular upon release.


The activity of taking a photo of a recognizable chicken drumstick became an effective solution for the problem of expensive subway ads being largely ignored by commuters. FamilyMart would only deliver 888 portions of free chicken drumstick bento sets every hour. Such limited time offers have initiated a scramble for these meals. When compared to the conventional QR code scanning activity, the act of photo-taking brings the advertisers closer to the latest fads of our youths and their preferences for taking and showing off pictures they had taken. The image recognition technology is also able to accurately determine and provide a feedback of an image of the FamilyMart chicken drumstick bento within 3 seconds. Cheaters beware, because the technology is able to filter out chicken drumsticks from KFC, New Orleans, or wherever they may be made. Conventional subway ads have encountered a bottleneck. This interactive image recognition technology may serve as an inspiration for innovative breakthroughs in the future.