The present & future of advertising: 2 kinds of Tubes

Two articles at Cool News caught my attention recently, being about developments in advertising at opposite ends of the spectrum:

The first was about YouTube. Lee Gomes recently scraped it and discovered some interesting statistics:

  • There are more than 6.1 million videos on YouTube now.
  • The number is growing at about 20% per month.
  • The most popular titles include the words ‘love’, ‘music’ and’girl’.
  • Nearly 2000 videos have ‘Zidane‘ in the title.
  • 70% of users are American.
  • Nearly half are under 20 years of age.

The second was about advertising on the London Tube, which is a $3 billion, 8 year contract won by CBS, whose innovations include:

  • A glue-less dust-free poster co-created with 3M.
  • Cascading flat-panel TVs adjoining the escalators, which are capable of showing a series of rubber balls bouncing from one screen to another, following commuters as they ride down the escalator.
  • Super-strong screens for the TVs which can withstand 5 blows from a sledgehammer.
  • Lightboxes for the corridors leading to platforms.

All told, CBS has invested “about $136 million on new advertising equipment in the Tube, including 8,300 glueless poster sites, 150 projectors, about 2,000 video screens and 4,500 light boxes.” (From )

That’s a lot of money bet on the next 8 years. Clearly CBS expects the Tube to be generate a considerable return on this investment through advertising to the captive audience travelling to and from work. It’s a vision of the future that is quite different from the one over at YouTube. Which one do you think will come about?

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