Wouldn't it be great if all ads were useful? Personally, I love this campaign from IBM. I love the idea of design with purpose. And I completely believe that advertising efforts should serve a purpose.
The premise of the OOH portion of IBM's “Smarter Cities” campaign is simple. Billboards are everywhere, but most of them are useless asides from promoting a brand or product. Why not make billboards that do something useful? Each 'billboard' is modified to perform a service. They become a bench, a shelter, a ramp.
The best part about this campaign? It makes all those useless billboards out there look bad.
Looking back, I've always preferred ads with purpose. My first leave-behind after portfolio school was a calendar that featured a different ad from my portfolio each month. So even if the creative director didn't dig my book, he'd (hopefully) get some use out of it.
Campaign by Ogilvy France.