Posted by: Yorgos | June 18, 2008

Text 21 – Advertising in the Tube

I was in London recently and I found really useful to use the underground, otherwise known as the Tube (I love the fact that by using the word “tube” one can also mean the TV). What really caught my eye is the way the advertisments are made in order to fit into the “tube experience”. I was told, while I was in the university, that the text does not matter all that much (even though, it still has to be as good as possible), since it is the image that catches the eye and all that is needed to be shown in the brand name, so it can imprint itself in the consumer’s brain (this is not exactly advertising in a nutshell and I am sure I am saying lots of things wrong, but you get the meaning).

However, there is a whole other advertising tactic in the tube. The advertisers know that those who look at the posters will be looking at them for quite some time, either while waiting for the train either inside the train itseld. That is why they have made the posters rich in text, still keeping the focus on key words, but obliging in a way the commuter/consumer to keep his or her eyes on the poster for as long as possible.

In the end, the text still doesn’t matter. What does matter is for your eyes to stay on the poster and close to the brand name as long as possible. This is an amazing advertising tactic and if it was not so bluntly manipulative, I would congratulate those who started the trend.

Anyway, the goals of advertising are known and they do not differ a lot to propaganda. This is just another tactic; not the problem.

In the next posts, I hope to write more about my London and Munich experience from my recent trip, always staying within the boundaries of media, books and (occasionally) art.

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