For incoming college freshmen, transportation is an issue – mom and dad aren’t there to drive you around, your car was left behind, and campus transportation can only take you so far. That leaves one critical decision: Uber or Lyft?
Lyft and ISL partnered to tackle this issue. Knowing our audience and their apathy toward traditional marketing tactics (e.g. tabling and handing out “swag’), we gambled on something much bigger.
The Lyft Luck Machine is a giant, Lyft-pink slot machine complete with a massive chrome handle, flashing LEDs, proprietary vending software, custom animations, and much more. College students would be able to try their hand at the Lyft Luck Machine for the chance to win awesome Lyft merch and ride discounts. Two lucky players could win $100 of Lyft credits every day! The catch? Before being able to play, the student had to prove they had the Lyft app downloaded on their phone.
"This is the most engaging thing on campus. By far."
Our objective was to design a machine big enough to draw attention while still being approachable, on-brand, and incredibly fun. Naturally, we started by retrofitting a vending machine, as they’re already large and designed for transport. From there we added a customized dispensing mechanism, micro-controlled LED lights, a 32-inch display, and plenty of pink paint. We connected everything using logic designed to dispense different prizes at different rates, adding a programmatic, gamified thrill to the experience.
The on-screen animations were the result of rigorous creative iteration. We aimed to strike the perfect balance between Vegas-inspired slots, CG animation, and Lyft branding. The resulting idle, start, win and loss screen states were accompanied by video game-inspired music, creating an arcade-like environment and a brief escape from the college campus chaos.