Di Cunningham: The ad campaign that didn't really make any sense...

Dimitris Giannoulis of Norwich in action during the Sky Bet Championship match at Carrow Road, Norwi

Dimitris Giannoulis in front of the Lotus banner during City's 1-0 win over Rotherham.

In between the multitude of social media posts this weekend celebrating the industry of Olly Skipp and the ingenuity and invention of Emi Buendia and Teemu Pukki there were a number concerning the new stand-wrap vinyls from Lotus.  

One of the plastic banners clearly shared the prestige car maker’s ‘For The Drivers’ strap-line with the iFollow audience but there were other giant yellow and green messages that were cryptic to say the least - the kind of scrambled lettering seen sometimes when your laptop can’t handle an alien font. 

On Twitter @hairybeeee6 said ‘Loving the new #Lotus signs but what do they say??!!! Looks like a massive QR code on some of them’. Rob Butler of BBC Radio Norfolk at the ground tweeted back that the radio team had tested the QR code theory but nothing came up on their phones. 

Another shout was that it was a banner that hadn’t been put out properly. Others suggested it was a marketing tactic - and had succeeded to the point that we were all discussing it.  

My own guesses ranged from 1) you needed to wear 3D specs to reveal a hidden message and 2) it was a digital burp resulting from an error in the transfer of information to the printer, and Emperor’s-new-clothes-style no one had dared to question it.  

The answer eventually appeared - thanks @RogueBaboon57 for putting us out of our misery (though frankly I’m not really sure you have!) and tweeting: ‘It’s ‘For the Drivers’ twice, one is a mirror image flipped upwards’. 

Flipped upwards perhaps so that fans in the upper Barclay could see it too? But there are no fans anywhere in the stadium at the moment. And when we are back the seats will no longer have vinyl advertising covers. Any way you look at this ad campaign it doesn’t make sense. 

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I do confess to finding the mislettered Lotus banner strangely inspiring - perhaps the 2021-22 third shirt is right there? It is after all almost a rework of the early 90’s Egg and Cress pattern. 

And I rather like the idea that @RogueBaboon57 is wrong and that as we near the end of the season the writing will become clearer with each match won - until the words ‘League Champions!’ are revealed.  

Last Friday would have been the birthday of Norwich City’s cool, courageous, charismatic and supremely talented Justin Fashanu, and Thursday the 41st anniversary of his Match of the Day Goal of the Season for his Carrow Road wonder volley against Liverpool. So it’s the one-year Bannerversary of the fabulous Along Come Norwich/Proud Canaries 20-metre-long tribute, displayed in the River End at last season’s game against Liverpool. The design by artist David Shenton described the sequence of passes in the build-up as well as Justin’s turn and left footed strike. It wasn’t till I was rewatching the passage of play before the goal on YouTube to check I had the player names in the correct order for David that I first heard the fan chants of ‘John Bond Out!’ 

As fans and media organisations celebrated the great man this weekend there was much tweeting of that spectacular goal - and I noticed others becoming aware of the chanting in the footage.  

Although Bond did leave the club in autumn of that year it was by choice as he made the move to Manchester City - and though it’s on record that he wasn’t originally impressed with Fashanu (he apparently said of him that his ‘brain and feet didn’t work together at all’) it might be said that Justin saved him from too much more grief from supporters.  

I do wonder if Kevin Bond who started the move with a pass to Greg Downes heard the calls for his father to be sacked. It’s irrelevant now I suppose given the significance of what happened seconds later. 

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