Summary of Chinese Ads in New York City’s Times Square

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Chinese companies once regarded seeing their company logo flash on the billboards at New York City’s Times Square as an ultimate sign of success. But Chinese companies got richer, and ad agencies made Times Square ad placement easier. Now, Chinese ads flood Times Square’s billboards. Many of them are of questionable quality or purpose, and maybe Chinese ads have overstayed their welcome. Meanwhile, Times Square ads have become less prestigious – and thus less popular – in China. In this article posted on tech media platform All Weather TMT, staff writer Zhang Jilong describes the waning Chinese hype about Times Square advertising.

About the Author

Zhang Jilong is a staff writer for tech media All Weather TMT, an online media platform focused on the internet industry.



Ads displayed in New York City’s Times Square mirror global economic trends and the rise and fall of industries.

According to a report published by the Times Square Advertising Coalition, 300,000 people pass through Times Square every day. Visitors spend an average 81 minutes there, including an average eight minutes looking at the billboards. Each day, more than 240,000 people post on social media about their experiences at Times Square.

A look at the ads in Times Square can tell you a lot about global economic trends and which industries are on the rise. In the 1980s, apart from American companies, Japanese electronics and automobile brands dominated the billboards. When Japan’s economy slumped in the 1990s, Japanese ads slowly disappeared.

As China’s economy grew, so did its presence on the Times Square billboards.

The first Chinese ad in Times Square – by drug company 999 Pharmaceutical –  appeared in 1995. Fifteen years later, Chinese ads began flooding Times Square...

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