TfL pledges fresh approach after 'realising' it is an advertising company

Transport for London said it has experienced a "quantum leap" in its thinking after realising it is also an advertising company.

TfL: claiming 'bold new approach' to how it provides advertising in London
TfL: claiming 'bold new approach' to how it provides advertising in London

John Pizzamiglio, the lead for advertising strategy at TfL, has said that the coming months will see a step-change in the way the London transport provider will deliver marketing communications. 

Writing in The OutLook, the first report on the outdoor ad industry by trade body Outsmart, Pizzamiglio said TfL would bring a "bold new approach" to how it does business in London. 

He said: "There has been a quantum leap in TfL’s thinking. Obviously the smooth operating of the transport network is always the priority, but it has been realised that in this new more commercial world, whether by design or by good luck, TfL is also an advertising company.

"The demonstration of a desire to work in new ways with partnership at the core is integral in securing the long term agreement with TfL. This long term view clearly shows a commitment from TfL to reflect the need for more agile and flexible solutions for advertisers whilst maximising the commercial potential for all parties." 

Pizzamiglio said TfL’s "fresh approach" to outdoor advertising would include bringing together different networks, including the tube, DLR, Overground, and Tramlink, as well as new investment in developing and advancing its outdoor media estate. 

TfL is currently reviewing its advertising and media agency contracts and is expected to complete the process next month. Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO, Engine, Ogilvy & Mather and VCCP are all involved in the advertising review to take over the account from M&C Saatchi.

MEC, TfL’s incumbent media agency, is defending the account amid rival bids from Carat and Manning Gottlieb OMD. 

In July last year TfL appointed JCDecaux to handle its £500 million bus shelter contract, moving out of Clear Channel after 10 years.

The OutLook was produced by Outsmart, the out of home advertising trade body, to "help advertisers and agencies get excited about OOH and make it a ‘must have’ on every media plan". 

The report contains contributions from a range of industry figures, including Steve Parker, the joint chief executive of Starcom Mediavest Group and James Murphy, the chief executive of Adam & Eve/DDB.

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