Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Poor advertising choice of the day

Perhaps you've read about New York magazine's made-fresh-daily transit campaign? I see some problems. On the one hand, changing the content of the ads every day is a cool idea, and it seems to be working OK, at least for the ones that people walk by. But then there's the peculiar case of the billboards on the empty platform at Columbus Circle (see above). The text is too small, and the impact is just lost on those squinting from the occupied platforms. In case you're wondering what that is in the middle, it's the floor plan to a condo going for $1.4 million somewhere in Midtown, and the static tagline at the bottom is "This is New York." Other recent executions of the ad included Yankees-Red Sox box scores and some quotation about fashion and another by Frederick Douglass. There's a chance that these particular ads might be more visible from the trains themselves, but who's more likely to look at them: those who see them in a few seconds through grimy windows or those staring at them for 10, 12, 15 minutes? The better ads for this space are not the ones that require small-text-reading and thought. The Deuce Bigalow ads there recently were -- if not better -- at least more appropriate for the site.

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