Ikea’s target market includes urban young people — many of whom live in relatively small big-city apartments. A lot of Ikea’s offerings are optimized to this segment. One challenge for Ikea is demonstrating how their products make a small apartment bigger. One way is to create a small apartment in their stores — but to get to more customers, you could bring the small apartment to them. Ikea knows its urban market often travels on the metro (subway). So they built a 54 square meter (about 580 square feet) apartment in a Paris metro station. The apartment’s windows allowed customers to see Ikea’s furniture and cabinets in action. Five volunteers lived there for a week — they even threw a party.
This is an interesting example of creative promotion. Ikea got some buzz — so more than just metro riders in one station got to see this. Will it generate interest? Sales? It is a good example of trying to break through the clutter of advertising.