This post is part of a regular series, “Powerful Advertising“, where we showcase some truly meaningful, effective, and powerful advertising.

As if rush hour traffic wasn’t painful enough…

Uber, the company hell-bent on monopolizing the entire world’s transportation needs, is now using drones to present ads for its UberPool service.

UberPool is their new ride-sharing app that makes carpooling a breeze.

Drivers in Mexico City were harassed by a sea of Uber drones while waiting in bumper-to-bumper traffic.

The signs said things like: “The city would be for you, not 5.5 million cars.” and “Driving by yourself? This is why you can never see the volcanoes.” (apparently smog is a bit of an issue in Mexico City)

uber drones
Way to rub salt in the wound, Uber.

The advantages of this type of advertising are obvious. It’s attention-grabbing, cheaper than those ugly billboards that line all of our highways, and clearly gets a lot more attention in the media.

But does it work?

The signs basically read as nothing more than a passive-aggressive statement along the lines of “See? You should have just used us instead.”

How many people respond favorably to that kind of tone?

And what about safety?

Let’s ignore the obvious fact that these things are carrying stuff that could fall on you at any moment, weigh a minimum of 5lbs, and only have a battery life of less than 20 mins. (at which point they come free-falling out of the sky)

No, let’s look at the real hypocritical issue here.

We’re constantly being reminded of how we need to focus on the road and avoid distracted driving. Especially since it now kills more people every year than drunk driving.

What is more distracting than having a flying robot in your face trying to get you to buy crap? How is that safe?

And why stop at hovering over traffic jams? Why not have drones rain coupons on you from above, or follow you into a Burger King parking lot while playing an ad for McDonald’s, or chase ambulances around offering cheap law services from your local Saul Goodman?


There just has to be better, less invasive ways of advertising your crap, doesn’t there? Every new medium and every piece of technology mankind creates just turns into another method to sell things.

But I suppose we can’t really be surprised. After all, “money talks”. And its voice seems to get louder every day.

(Header image via MarketWatch)
You think it's that far off? Think again.
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