Google Street view hits the pavement with latest Gran Turismo flash ad campaign.

Here is a different kind of banner, created for the launch of racing simulation game Gran Turismo 5. Long known for its pulse-pounding realism, ever since it was developed for PlayStation back in 1997, all we can say is that there is now an interactive banner ad that does this legendary racing game proud.

  This rich media banner puts players right into the cockpit of this powerful racing machine so they can test drive it along one of three race tracks, where the user is surrounded by the high-quality photos of Google Street View – which simulate the real-world views in awesome, eye-popping detail. Users can control the car via mouse or keyboard, so it’s hands-on, exciting (the photography is sharp and sensational), and it provides a taste of the “real deal” in a way that admirably cuts through the clutter.

  We’ll deduct some points for the ad’s somewhat slow and clunky performance (trust us, the real GT5 is way better), but it’s definitely a harbinger of the “immersive experience” that more and more banner display ads will provide.

  Back in the day, marketers spoke of capturing mindshare (i.e. the limited number of brand names a consumer will typically recall when thinking of a product type or category), but that is so circa 1999. These days, leading-edge marketers are thinking more and more about mindscapes - virtual reality settings wherein the customer can experience the product in an exciting, multisensory way.