Translink: Making smart moves to get back into the fast lane

IPA Effectiveness Awards Case Study 2018


In 2016 Translink, Northern Ireland’s public transport provider, set the vision of growing passenger journeys to 85 million by 2021. But the problem was that, following public funding cuts, 2015/16 saw passenger journeys decline by 1.6m. An aggressive growth strategy, return to previous levels of advertising spend and a shift in messaging transformed two years of passenger journey decline into a record year with growth of 2.29m journeys, which led to growth in group revenue of £7.3m compared to before the campaign.

Register interest to download case study >

For Translink, Smartmovers is our overarching brand building campaign that permeates across all of our tactical activity. We have worked closely with Ardmore Advertising to build brand recognition through the creative style and messaging across all of our sub-brands and services. Following the learnings of 2016/17, detailed in this IPA case study, we moved to phase 2 of the Smartmovers campaign in 2017/18 - launching the ‘Join The Smartmovers’ campaign. Ardmore challenged us to activate the Smartmovers movement by recruiting our customers as advocates of our services, to tell personal stories of how traveling with Translink benefits them. This bold move has added significant credibility to our brands and Ardmore’s striking new creative featuring real passengers has been well received in the market. Primary research was carried out through focus groups and we monitor the performance of each burst of tactical activity as well as overall results. We already carry out regular customer satisfaction surveys on-board our services and are developing further assets to measure the entire customer experience. This will better enable us to regularly measure brand perception. Ardmore managed the recruitment, vetting and selection of passenger volunteers to feature in the campaign and this process is ongoing as we continue to refresh content and develop media assets. This innovation has led to a significant shift in the balance of media activity in favour of digital and social channels, and the opportunity to track engagement through these channels. Better data has contributed to more effective measurement of our marketing communications, further embedding this into the culture of how we plan and deliver integrated campaigns. Our Get on Board corporate strategy for 2016-2021 clearly sets out Translink’s objectives with a focused set of growth goals. We are confident that Smartmovers will continue to make a significant contribution to achieving these goals. 2016/17 was just the beginning.

Claire Vaux, Marketing Manager
Translink

Shortlist 2018

Title

Translink: Making smart moves to get back into the fast lane

Brand

Smart Movers

Client

Translink

Agency

Ardmore Advertising

Principal Authors

  • Paul James - Ardmore Advertising

Contributing Authors

  • Mark Thompson - Ardmore Advertising
  • Theresa McLaughlin - Ardmore Advertising

Credited Companies

  • Translink - Brand/Client

< Back to entries
Shortlist 2018

Title

Translink: Making smart moves to get back into the fast lane

Brand

Smart Movers

Client

Translink

Agency

Ardmore Advertising

Principal Authors

  • Paul James - Ardmore Advertising

Contributing Authors

  • Mark Thompson - Ardmore Advertising
  • Theresa McLaughlin - Ardmore Advertising

Credited Companies

  • Translink - Brand/Client

Translink: Making smart moves to get back into the fast lane

IPA Effectiveness Awards Case Study 2018


In 2016 Translink, Northern Ireland’s public transport provider, set the vision of growing passenger journeys to 85 million by 2021. But the problem was that, following public funding cuts, 2015/16 saw passenger journeys decline by 1.6m. An aggressive growth strategy, return to previous levels of advertising spend and a shift in messaging transformed two years of passenger journey decline into a record year with growth of 2.29m journeys, which led to growth in group revenue of £7.3m compared to before the campaign.

Register interest to download case study >