Friday, April 15, 2016

Storytelling has a direct result on building transit that could compete with cars

I recently wrote an article on Mobility Lab calling for transit agencies to launch a full-on effort to make commercials for transit that are as enticing as the many excellent car commercials that the auto industry has been pumping out for decades.

As a communications professional, it's often difficult to show exact influence and results of the blogs, videos, tweets, and other materials we create. But when The Rapidian, Grand Rapid's local citizen-run newspaper, published an article this week, Mobility Lab can be proud to see that our advocacy has had a direct success.

Brittany Schlacter leads off her article this way:
Paul Mackie, one of the nation’s foremost mass transit bloggers and the communications director of the Virginia-based nonprofit research organization Mobility Lab, recently posed this challenge to America’s public transportation industry’s leaders:
“Where are the Super Bowl-esque ads about public transportation? Where are all the transit ads representing freedom to explore and observe, safety, good health, cost savings, sustainability, community, patriotism, and happiness? Transit communications needs to catch up if transit and alternate modes ever hope to catch on.”
At The Rapid, we have embraced Mackie’s challenge. We are launching a new campaign that informs the Greater Grand Rapids region about the merits of public transportation through simple, powerful, consistent and, most importantly, positive messages about the experience.
Transit communications needs to catch up if transit ever hopes to catch on. The Rapid presents a start.