Spinal Tap: NYT Runs 'Spadia' Ads For NBC

For the first time in its history, The New York Times on Monday ran "spadia" advertisements--a page wrapped around an entire section--to promote four new and returning NBC shows this fall season: "Bionic Woman," "Chuck," "Heroes," and "Journeyman."

In the New York metro area, the spadia ads appeared wrapped around the spines of the Arts, Business Day, Metro, and Sports sections. The ads were reinforced with strip ads on the front of the sections and full-page ads on their backs.

At over 2,000 column inches, the NBC campaign is the largest single promotion for an entertainment property in the paper's history. John Miller, chief marketing officer for NBC Universal Television Group, praised the paper's flexibility: "The New York Times is a great strategic ally in creating their first-ever spadia unit for our Monday premieres. These will be heroic units for a heroic lineup."

Faced with stiff competition from the Internet across all their main ad categories, newspapers have begun experimenting with unorthodox, eye-catching ad formats to pique advertiser interest. Some examples include allowing column borders to trace the irregular shape of an ad in the center of the page, banner ads that slice across the middle of the page, front-page ads, and the spadia ads partially wrapping the front page.



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