After Sundown, This Tourism Billboard Begins Streaming Footage of Yukon’s Midnight Sun

The goal is to lure Vancouver residents a few hours north

After 11 p.m. in Vancouver, the Yukon billboard begins livestreaming footage of the midnight sun. - Credit by Tourism Yukon

Tourism Yukon in Canada is leaving the light on for its neighbors to the south with this real-time video billboard campaign from agency Cossette and Astral Out of Home.

To encourage folks in Vancouver, British Columbia, to visit the Yukon territory (roughly a 2.5-hour flight), the client set up several billboards designed to give potential visitors a real glimpse of the area’s famous “midnight sun.”

At 11 p.m., after sundown in Vancouver, the billboards spring to life for a couple of hours, streaming live footage of the still-bright sky and epic natural beauty outside Dawson City, Yukon. At that location, 175 miles from the Arctic Circle, the summer sun sinks, but never quite sets.

Tourism Yukon

The campaign debuted last week and runs for several more days. Cossette hopes the contrast between the dramatic glow of the video stream and the darkness surrounding the billboards will encourage potential travelers to consider the Yukon. (Or maybe the glare from the signs will awaken people across Vancouver and piss them off—who can say?)

Seriously though, the agency “wanted to give Vancouverites a small taste of the midnight sun, a natural phenomenon that only happens in a few places in the world,” says Cossette copywriter Marc Wilson. “By displaying the live images alongside a typical night in Vancouver, we can show that nighttime isn’t a barrier to outdoor adventure in the Yukon.”

Alas, the job of capturing live Steadicam footage for the billboard—handled by real live human Alistair Maitland—sounds more like drudgery than adventure.

“We had to find a photographer that was keen to work from 10:30 p.m. to 1:30 a.m. every night of the week, including weekends, in a remote location with minimal Wi-Fi signal,” says agency art director Kelsey Hughes.

After that, he’ll need a vacation. We hear the Yukon is pretty nice this time of year.

Client: Tourism Yukon
Creative Agency: Cossette
Media Agency: Astral Out of Home, Bell Media
Photographer: Alistair Maitland

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@DaveGian David Gianatasio is a longtime contributor to Adweek, where he has been a writer and editor for two decades. Previously serving as Adweek's New England bureau chief and web editor, he remains based in Boston.
Publish date: July 17, 2018 © 2020 Adweek, LLC. - All Rights Reserved and NOT FOR REPRINT