Marketing Report
Google and creative agency Tombras create ‘impossible’ ad campaign using using Gemini AI

Google and creative agency Tombras create ‘impossible’ ad campaign using using Gemini AI

As part of Google’s annual Creative Lighthouse event that took place during the Cannes Lions International Festival of Creativity last week, Google invited Tombras and a select group of creative visionaries to unveil work from an experiment powered by Generative AI using Gemini.

The Ask? Create an “impossible” ad campaign using Gemini to supercharge the creative development process.

To bring this “impossible” campaign to life, Tombras partnered with client PODS, an industry leader that revolutionised the moving and storage category through its portable container service offerings.

The brand considers the PODS container as its original billboard and some of its most effective advertising. Tombras’ idea was to make that same “billboard” impossibly intelligent – capable of auto generating real-time ads based on location, weather, time and hyper-specific neighbourhood knowledge. In other words, Tombras would turn the PODS container into “The Impossibly Smart Billboard” utilising Gemini.

To start, the agency developed a custom PODS-specific Creative Brief Builder with Gemini. What would've taken days took hours to build a brief with hours of transcripts, brand documentation, podcast videos, over 10,000 Google reviews, and project briefing details – all to help Gemini understand why PODS is different and why people use the service.

With a tone of voice identified and consumer data mapped, they asked Gemini to write some headlines to see where it took them.

Avi Baliga, ECD, Tombras NY: “From the start it was clear Gemini was up to the task, so we decided to push its limits and create localised lines for all the neighbourhoods in New York City.”

For headline writing, Tombras used Google Cloud Vertex AI with Gemini 1.5 Pro to develop a real-time application enabling hyper-local headlines to automatically display based on the PODS' actual GPS location.

Tombras then upgraded a PODS moving truck with LED screens on the outside that allowed it to display hyper targeted messages – over 6,000 headlines – to every neighbourhood in NYC on the way to its destination. As it moved into different neighbourhoods/streets the billboard was updated in real time. Landing Gear, a NYC-based experiential production company, partnered with Tombras to bring the PODS activation to life.

Sadie Thoma, director US ads & industry marketing, Google: “For the past seven years, Google has partnered with marketers to explore the creative possibilities with new Google ad products and solutions, as part of our Creative Lighthouse Program. This year we invited five agencies to harness the power of Gemini and Generative AI in an upcoming client campaign. Throughout the ten week experiment, we’ve been inspired by Tombras’ ingenuity transforming PODS trucks into Gemini-powered digital billboards with LED screens that auto-generate real-time ads based on hyper-specific neighbourhood knowledge and data inputs as they drive around the country."

The project was an embodiment of the Tombras philosophy – creative, tech, digital, and production coming together to pull off a stunt in real time around a timely issue. Connecting Data + Creativity for Business Results.