Ambient Marketing


Ambient Marketing: Expanding the Concept of Marketing Communication for Transitional Times, Special issue of Journal of Marketing Communications; Deadline 31 Jan 2013

Call for Papers

Journal of Marketing Communications
Special issue on

Ambient Marketing: Expanding the Concept of Marketing Communication for Transitional Times

Submissions due date: 31st January 2013

The present proposal for an upcoming issue of the Journal of Marketing Communications is devoted to understanding the new and increasingly important phenomenon of ambient/street marketing, a concept that is shaping and revitalizing the entire idea of advertising in these turbulent times.

Ambient/street marketing is a complex form of marketing communication that uses elements of the environment, including nearly every available physical surface, to convey messages and deliver incentives that encourage and elicit customer engagement towards a brand. Ambient/street marketing, in its many shapes and forms, ranging from traditional outdoor to alternative out-of-home and guerrilla marketing, employs the urban landscape in ways that are generally less expensive and more cost-efficient than traditional advertising media. Over the last decade ambient marketing has become an increasingly important marketing-support medium, especially in emerging markets and during the current period of worldwide economic downturn in established ones.

Among the key trends driving the recent rapid expansion of ambient/street marketing are:

  • the perception, among marketers, that ambient media provide high engagement, targeting options, proximity to point-of-sale, measurable impact, and cost effectiveness;
  • exposure to and recall of ambient media is growing as individuals spend more time commuting to work, walking in urban areas, waiting in transit hubs, and shopping at retail outlets;
  • the vast majority of consumers view ambient media as favourable and educational;
  • new technology enables companies to launch digital advertising platforms that generate higher revenues than the conventional formats they replace.

Although ambient media have been of particular interest to both marketers and advertising agencies over the last several years, the current body of existing knowledge and literature is very scarce. Basically, today, it is limited to the traditional outdoor advertising literature on billboards and outdoor and point-in-time examples of ambient success.

For this issue, authors may submit studies underpinning the role of ambient/street marketing in the companies’ communication mix and its contribution to enhancing brand value, qualitative and quantitative empirical studies developing insights into effectiveness of ambient media and their impact on consumer brand engagement, methodological papers on ambient/street marketing research and its impact on marketing decision-making, case-study analysis of successful and unsuccessful ambient/street marketing management, comparative studies of cross-national and cross-cultural use of ambient media. Papers should be theoretically well grounded and contain significant managerial implications. A primary criterion for assessing fit with the special issue is whether the manuscript provides new insights into the practice of ambient/street marketing and its impacts on marketing decision-making and policies.

Manuscripts that would be appropriate for this special issue can develop multidisciplinary reference to such areas as marketing, consumer behaviour, psychology, sociology, anthropology, communication, advertising and focus on either large global corporations, international companies, or small-medium enterprises operating in national or local markets. Furthermore, manuscripts can focus on manufacturing, retail or service companies. Specific topics can include, but are not limited to:

  • Foundations of ambient/street marketing theory and practice.
  • The impact of ambient media on consumer engagement with a brand.
  • Integration issues of traditional media and unconventional ambient advertising to enhance brand value and marketing results.
  • Analysis of the urban environment as a contextual clue to facilitate a brand experience.
  • Methodological issues related to research on ambient/street marketing .
  • Approaches, methods and techniques to evaluate ambient/street marketing effectiveness.
  • Comparative studies of ambient/street marketing management in companies of different sizes and/or operating in different sectors.
  • Cross-national and cross-cultural issues and factors affecting the practice of ambient/street marketing in different countries.
  • The role of ambient/street marketing in Integrated Marketing Communications (IMC) programs.
  • Ethical issues related to ambient/street marketing practices.

Submissions to the special issue should be original contributions and should not be under consideration for any other publication at the same time. As a guide, articles should be between 4000 and 6000 words in length. The abstract should be comprehensible without reference to the text and should not exceed 200 words.

Manuscripts should be sent electronically (in Microsoft Word format) to any of the guest editors at;; or before 31st January 2013. The format of the manuscripts must follow Journal of Marketing Communications guidelines. For the Author guidelines please visit

All questions regarding the suitability of manuscripts should be sent to any of the guest editors.

Guest Editors
Rossella C. Gambetti, Ph.D.
Assistant professor of Management Sciences
Department of Economics and Management Sciences
Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Largo Gemelli, 1
20123 Milan (Italy
Phone: +39 02 7234 3647

Edoardo T. Brioschi
Professor of Business Communication
Research Laboratory on Business Communication (LABCOM)
Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore
Largo Gemelli, 1
20123 Milan (Italy)
Phone: +39 02 7234 2489

Don E. Schultz, Ph.D.
Professor Emeritus-in-Service of Integrated Marketing Communication
Department of Integrated Marketing Communications
Medill School
Northwestern University
1870 Campus Drive,
MTC 3-101
Evanston, IL 60208-2101 (U.S.A.)
Phone: 1 847 491 2059

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