MTA may shuffle the deck with redeemable MetroCards

The metropolitan transit authority has announced that they will be selling the front and back of the metro card to advertisers as early as October. This is just a part of the new effort in raising revenue from the MTA system. As many people have probably seen by now, subway cars are being wrapped inside and out with larger than life ads. This will become more common as we head toward 2013.

Many see this new ad space as something much bigger than originally conceived. Wayne Congar and Brendan Bilko of creative and branding consultancy Mayday Mayday Mayday, believe that New York has an opportunity here to go above and beyond traditional advertising.

They have come up with a citywide puzzle including the faces of metro cards as puzzle pieces. Each card would be printed with a small piece of a much larger picture and would come together to form a billboard or window display. “We thought about how advertisers can create a campaign that changes commuters’ relationships with the MetroCard,” they explain. “Where rather than purchasing any card, they’re hoping the one that comes out of the machine is a specific one, the missing piece of a billboard or window display or artwork.” (1) Nike has already shown interest in using their giant 57th street display for the game. In Nike’s case, the MetroCard would be redeemable at Nike Town for a discount on Nike’s new products and each new piece would reveal more of the larger 57th street display.

Mayday Mayday Mayday has come up with three different campaigns that would easily fit this new marketing model. The first being that each MetroCard would uncover a show of some sort and the contributors/winners would gain exclusive access to that show. The second would be the launch of a new product and the contributors/winners would get a discount or special offer from the hosting company. The third and final campaign would include a large artwork that New Yorkers would collaborate in putting together thus creating a sense of unity amongst the city. Each campaign is ultimately in place to drive the sales of MTA cards all over the city and boost city revenues. This would be a fun, engaging way of implementing it.

Mayday Mayday Mayday may really be on to something.

1. Hutchings, Emma. “Trending Stories.” Mashable. PSFK, 1 Aug. 2012. Web. 06 Aug. 2012. .

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