Hop On Board Revisited

A little over a month ago I reviewed es/drake’s Hop On Board campaign for Valley Regional Transit and ACHD. Since then, its been bouncing around in the back of my head, and now seems as good of a time as any to revisit it.

After the initial splash of this campaign, it doesn’t seem that there has been very much follow up to it. I haven’t seen any of the television spots run lately, or heard anything on the radio. Nor have I seen much of anything on any of the buses or commuter vans around town. Was this whole campaign a one-shot deal? I sure hope not.

For now, let’s assume that it wasn’t. The whole Hop On Board campaign has “got legs,” in my opinion, so the question now is what would you do with it next? Me, I’d do things such as:

  • Testimonials from actual riders — I’m sure es/drake has been touting the increased number of riders as a result of this campaign, and Valley Regional Transit and ACHD are both schoolgirl-giddy about it. But why not share something similar with the intended audience — the commuters? It could be in the form of testimonials from those who have recently started taking advantage of the program. It could be someone from ACHD talking up the benefits of the increased participation. Take a page from college recruiters — if you can talk up, and demonstrate the success of the school/program/athletic team/etc. it makes recruiting future students/athletes/mass transit users much easier.
  • Continuity of the message — I’ve beat up this subject already, but its worth mentioning again. It is much more difficult to see/hear the “Hop On Board” message, and then remember to go to rideline.org than it would be to hear the message and then go to hoponboard.org.
  • Incentive to participate — Give a little something away to those who are participating in the program. This time of year, its getting cold outside, so enlist the help of someone like Moxie Java or *gasp* Starbucks to offer certificates for free cups of coffee or something similar. It would be an added incentive for people to use the service, which would, in turn, provide increased revenue for Valley Regional Transit, as well as provide increased business to the respective coffee shop/chain.
  • Give riders something to occupy their time — Have a selection of newspapers available for riders to read in their non-driving time. Create a podcast that riders can subscribe to, and listen to on their iPods during the commute. The options are limitless.

Will anyone over at es/drake take this advice or use any of these suggestions? I hope so. They’re in a unique position right now to raise the bar on the work that they do, and this campaign could be a good first step. If they do use any of these ideas, I’ll chuckle to myself a bit, and then send them a bill for consulting services…

In all seriousness, though, please chime in with any other thoughts or suggestions that you might have.

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