Spotted! Be gum-free on the TTC

A new train and station campaign from the transit authority uses OOH to offer commuters a wrapper for their unwanted gum.

What’s grosser than stepping in, or worse, sitting in someone else’s unwanted gum?

It’s a scourge of public spaces around the globe, and a problem that the TTC is tackling with a new ad campaign aimed at reducing the amount of ickiness littering its trains and stations.

MiC caught the new campaign while taking the subway home from the CrossmediaTO event Wednesday night, and liked its inspired simplicity. Created by the TTC’s AOR Agency 59, the ads are done in pink and yellow and feature the phrase ‘Keep the TTC gum-free’ with diagrams underneath illustrating the process of taking the gum out of your mouth, putting it in a wrapper and putting it in the garbage. (MiC would file this under ‘things people should already know how to do’ but clearly they do not.)

Best of all, underneath the diagrams, there is a pad of paper that can be used to wrap up unwanted gum before (ostensibly) throwing it away.

The campaign is part of the TTC’s effort to improve the cleanliness of its stations and trains, Brad Ross, director, corporate communications, TTC, tells MiC. It has been augmented by adding more garbage bins to the stations and platforms so that people have a place to put their wrapped gum when they are done with it.

There are 6,500 gum signs up in the TTC’s 69-station system, Ross says. Ad inventory in the stations is managed by CBS Outdoor, which allots the TTC a percentage of inventory as part of its agreement.

The ads have only been up for a week, so it’s too early to tell whether or not it will work, Ross says.

‘It’s too soon to say yet, but the ads have gotten a lot of attention, and that’s good. We’re getting some earned media as well, so hopefully people will get the message.’