Taobao Mall: The Empty City Of China

Taobao Mall - Empty City Commercial 2

Taobao Mall is the largest online shopping emporium in China (and Asia). To highlight its strength, the online retailer has launched an advertising campaign that depicts an eery picture of a deserted Shanghai.

The campaign’s theme is “没人上街,不一定没人逛街” (Méi rén shàng jiē, bù yīdìng méi rén guàngjiē) roughly translating to, “Empty streets, does not mean no-one is shopping“. Here is the advert below:

On Youtube

On Youku

Its a not a bad TV advert, but at the same time it’s also not that good. This is due to the commercial’s distinct lack of originality.

The creative agency, ‘Lowe China’ described the commercial in its official press release as “revolutionary”.

However, there are countless examples where the concept has been used before. Here is the original, it was an advert created for British Airways by M&C Saatchi, all the way back in 1994. Its an absolute classic:

On Youtube

On Tudou

Aside from the TV commercial, four print advertisments were also created for the campaign. I came across the original concept designs too via, you can view them below.

Taobao Mall - Empty City 1a

Agency credit to: Lowe China

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