urbanite take

A Chicagoan opines on land use, transportation and the walkable city

Ads in and of the city

with one comment

It is finally summer in Chicago, and in the course of walking around I encountered this ad on a bus stop, one of my favorites.

Get it?

(Apologies for the random strip of shade at the left, I took this picture late in the evening so the angle wasn’t ideal.)

It says something about the ubiquity of public transportation in this city that Leinenkugel feels confident in making this ad. After all, if you don’t get it, the slogan almost becomes a little bit inane. The L and the CTA are pervasive enough in the lives of most Chicagoans — and this ad is found on a bus stop at a major street intersection in a neighborhood relatively well-served by public transit — that the reference pays off. I’d wager that the Leinenkugel marketing group gambled that a a large number of Chicagoans would understand the reference and feel appreciative of the Chicago-centric ad effort; I certainly did. (It also helps that Leinenkugel is based in Chippewa Falls, less than 350 miles from Chicago.)

Bank of America also has similar Chicago-themed ads that feature public transit:

Granted, this one is more explicit because it’s for Bank of America’s mobile banking, and so you’d expect that it would be more likely to draw a connection to forms of transit or other places where you’d use mobile banking. (The red text at the bottom says “Chicago loves Mobile Banking”; the picture quality is poor because I snapped it on my not-very-advanced phone.) But again, you can tell that Bank of America has made a conscious decision to focus on references it thinks will be understood by Chicagoans, and it’s nice to know that public transit is one of these references. Some of their other ads are a little less direct, mentioning to lines and colors, thus referencing Chicago’s colored transit lines.

There’s another ad in one of the downtown subway stations, that I don’t have a picture of at the moment, which is similar and has something like Next Stop: Jackson; Next Stop: Jackson; Next Stop: Jackson. It’s an ad showcasing how many ATMs there are in the city, and plays on the fact that “Jackson” is the name of two separate and heavily-used Red and Blue line stops downtown.

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Written by Andrew ACG

July 9, 2011 at 7:35 pm

One Response

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  1. Cool post!

    Interestingly, Bank of America is running a similar ad series on Metro North. I believe it basically replaces L with Metro North.

    Full disclosure: the attractive guy in the ad caught my eye before the witticism of the ad.

    Nevertheless, this ad series presents a really interesting interplay/relationship between mobile Internet access and commuting. I know we have bigger fish to fry, but given the high commuter rates on most public transit systems it’d be a worthwhile endeavor for more seamless/integrated mobile data access on transit systems–especially those underground. But, alas, I’m getting sidetracked by our poor mobile data/Internet infrastructure.

    Great blog! You’re so knowledgeable and passionate about these issues! Great to see that.

    Alan

    July 11, 2011 at 1:44 pm


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