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Virgin Megastores this week breaks a TV, print and outdoor ad campaign aimed at reaching early adapters in smaller urban markets.

Virgin, now with 14 stores, entered the U.S. in 1992 with a store on Sunset Boulevard in Los Angeles, and is set to open shop in Anaheim, Calif.; Denver; and Miami, as well as in large marketers such as Chicago and New York.

The effort includes three TV spots, from agency Swirl, San Francisco, showing three individuals with eclectic tastes. In one, a female with a lip stud who describes herself as a minister discusses her interest in opera, action movies and art books.

"I get it all at Virgin Mega-stores," she says. The tag: "Something for all of you."

"The Virgin brand celebrates people who can't be pigeonholed," said Martin Lauber, partner and creative director at Swirl, a start-up that won the business in March. RNF Media, Los Angeles, handles placement.

"We're an experience in shopping," said Christos Garkinos, VP-marketing at Virgin Megastores North America, which wants customers to realize the stores sell more than music.

The advertising also is intended to address research findings that the marketer's 15-to-24-year-old target audience prefers independent music stores, where they perceive the staff as more accustomed to recommending music suited to their personal tastes.


The campaign, which Mr. Garkinos said is budgeted at $2 million, will air on national cable with some network slots. Radio is planned, as well as print ads and outdoor in major markets such as Los Angeles, New York and San Francisco.

The ads break as Virgin prepares to launch its Virgin Cola brand in the U.S., perhaps by the end of the year. Ground Zero, Santa Monica, Calif., is agency for the soft drink.

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