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HSBC has a tendency to advertise in or around transit systems—usually airports, but I’ve also seen their ads in the NYC subway. This is advertising as performative demonstration: You say you’re a global bank, but now prove it. And they do, by targeting their advertising to reach self-consciously global consumers, who are, of course, found in transit. In one of their more clever advertising moves, HSBC painted their red line on the outside of airport Jetways. Their ads always show it moving through the world, and the Jetway is a close/appropriate metaphor if you’re trying to breathe physical life into an ephemeral brand.

This is all in the same vein of yesterday’s post: How pools of global capital swirl and concentrate where the return is likely to be greatest, unevenly distributing themselves. These pools are creating an archipelago of global metropoli as they both follow and reinforce a network of global capital. What are the implications for the future (international?) city?

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