Opposite of Ad Nauseum: Riding Norwegian Buses Improves Your Sex Life
(Warning: This ad isn’t completely safe for work.)
It’s no surprise revelation that sex sells; but this somewhat steamy advertisement (well, steamy by American standards) for Norwegian bus company Nettbuss isn’t really about sex, it’s about freedom and the unexpected pleasure of riding the bus. Sure, the one steamy scene does capture viewer attention, but I identify more with the kid running through the fields being chased by bullies than the Don Juan who’s accidental headbutt leads to a fun afternoon in the kitchen. I’m just way too coordinated for that.
Freedom through riding transit. It’s a concept embraced by Livable Streets advocates, but rarely seen on television. Ok, sometime you’ll see an ad like this for bike riding, but never for bus riding.
The ad also celebrates that a benefit to riding transit is interacting with other people. You never know if the person next to you on the bus is the kind of person who would help a young kid escape bullies, would take the train to their wedding or would lock a bunch of kids in the hallway for the worst field trip in history.
But what really makes this ad stands out is that its everything that American transit advertisements are not. Bold. Fun. Dare I say it, adventurous. There’s a lot that American transit carriers can learn from Europe, and one of those things is how to market transit service as something more than welfare or a cheap way to get to the ball game.