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Apple 'iPod Zone' Blankets London Subway Stop (WITH PHOTOS)

TMO Reports - Apple 'iPod Zone' Blankets London Subway Stop (WITH PHOTOS)

by , 3:00 AM EST, March 15th, 2005

Thousands of commuters to London's Leicester Square Underground subway station don't know it, but they are now part of the zone. The 'iPod Zone'.

Having begun last week, visitors are now seeing dark, drab white ceramic tile walls transformed into green posters on ceiling arches, escalator walls and ticket booths, all promoting Apple's newest flash-based digital media device, the iPod shuffle.

The campaign has been called a "major branding takeover" by British advertising trade journal Media Week, and is believed to be the first time an advertiser has carried out a blanket campaign at a London subway station in over seven years.

Apple's U.K. division is calling the campaign at the Tube stop the 'iPod Zone'.

"Music is an important part of the youth market and the Shuffle iPod is aimed directly at this group," Stephanie Vidal, Appleļæ½s European marketing manager, told the magazine.

Advertising experts say the subway campaign is expensive, but grabs the attention of consumers who are bombarded with more than 3,500 billboards, print ads, television and radio messages a day.


Photo courtesy Christopher Phin/MacUser

"This is a cool idea," said Barbara Lippert, media critic for Ad Week magazine. "If you're going to have advertising there anyway, there's a sort of intelligence and cohesion to Apple advertising that is better to look at than ads from Dr. Zizmore."

Ms. Lippert also believes the look and feel to the station changes when ads that are similar in style have the same look. "It's sort of like you're in some futuristic movie where only a few brands own everything in the world, including the subway."


Photo courtesy Christopher Phin/MacUser

Ms. Lippert doesn't agree with critics who say consumers tune out on a product blanketing an entire public space believing "it will make an impression upon them. You might even get people to forget the name of the station and just call it the 'Apple stop'," similar to the naming of professional sports stadiums in the U.S.

"The only downside could be people will get sick of it," Ms. Lippert commented. "The key there is to change out the ads on a consistent basis."

The latest marketing push from Apple Computer will include a television campaign as well for the shuffle, to begin in the coming weeks on British television networks.


Photo courtesy Christopher Phin/MacUser


Photo courtesy Christopher Phin/MacUser

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