Student foreheads provide platform for youth market

LONDON - FHM and youth pay-TV channel CNX are among the first brands to use student foreheads as a platform on which to advertise their products.

University students across the country are being given the chance to earn much-needed cash by having companies' logos and brand names temporarily tattooed to their foreheads.

Students will get paid the minimum wage, £4 an hour, to go out and about in the town in which they study to advertise the products. They will be paid to leave the advertising message on their forehead for a period of time.

The idea was dreamed up by guerrilla marketing agency Cunning Stunts, which made the headlines when it projected an image of a naked Gail Porter on to the Houses of Parliament to promote FHM's 100 Most Beautiful Women issue in 1999.

Cunning Stunts managing director Anna Carloss said the idea to use students was a result of reports in the press about the scale of student debts.

"We had been thinking about what other media could be exploited for advertising when we came up with the idea of using foreheads. This happened about a week before all the reports about the level of student debt," Carloss said.

The platform is likely to appeal to young brands, particularly those targeting the 16- to 24-year-old market.

Niall Ferguson, group marketing manager at FHM, said: "FHM is constantly looking for new and impactful ways to communicate to men. If we can do this and pay for the next round at the union bar at the same time, then it seems a good idea to us."

Carloss believes it could prove a more cost-effective medium for reaching that age group than TV or print. The agency is also looking at ways of getting students to estimate how many people they see when they go out, so that it can provide some form of measurement system for companies that require it.

The agency estimated that the students should have around three hours a day to go out and expose the message on their foreheads outside lectures and study time, although some logos may get more exposure from students who have more leisure time.

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