Why Advertise in the Subway?

One of the oldest subways in the world lives in New York City, USA. That metro system alone transports 4.3 million people each day. The subway is a unique venue for advertisements. Few other places provide such close-range, intimate locations to place real, physical ads both in the trains and throughout the train stations. Many riders spend their subway time in a receptive state of mind. It's not socially acceptable to focus on other passengers. So, ads are often the only things to look at. Every subway campaign is a high visibility campaign. There are additional benefits, as well.

Local, Repetitive Advertising

Although mobile and internet search is the preferred method of finding local businesses, consumers have to be aware of a business (or at least be aware of a particular kind of product or service category) to search for it. Especially for local businesses, subway advertising and transit system advertising increase awareness when consumers are near the point of purchase or on the way to it. Also, since many urban commuters ride the train every day, they have plenty of opportunities to view a particular ad in a given period of time. More views makes advertising more effective, in most cases.

Reasonable Cost

Ususally, subway ad CPMs (costs per thousand impressions) are around $6 or $7. That's comparable to some of the lowest cost advertising channels available. Subway advertising may not be suitable for certain types of campaigns, such as lead generation or time-sensitive CTA strategies but it's one of the best and most cost effective media for awareness campaigns.

Not Subject to Technological Limitations

While TV ads are muted or fast-forwarded and while internet ads are blocked, the only way a subway ad can lose impressions is by way of physical destruction. Subway ads aren't usually damaged.


By "pervasiveness," we don't mean the ads are pervasive throughout the city. We mean you can purchase all the ads locations in entire stations, entire train cars or entire trains or buses. This makes your message nearly impossible to overlook and also makes it a little more memorable. That memory could be enough to earn you that top-of-mind spot for many consumers.

Variety of Formats

We've discussed physical, poster advertisements in this article. However, some metro transit systems offer more than that. Everything from interactive ads to video ads may be available to you, inside vehicles or in and around stations. You have a variety of options to help you meet your goals creatively.

At isoTree, we specialize in targeted PPC lead generation. It's a technologically advanced type of advertising that makes leads easy to obtain and makes costs easy to estimate precisely. In fact, our clients can lock in their prices per lead. Get in touch with us to learn more.

David Kalla