As the world makes its slow return to normal, there’s a segment of our public infrastructure looking to increase marketing efforts and boost public trust: transit authorities. With COVID-19 dropping passenger rates considerably, public transit is still undeniably the cheapest and most eco-friendly method of transportation. Communicating this to the public can be tricky. Yet there is one visual tool that should be in the tool belt of all public transit authorities- video. A well done video has the power to communicate even the most complicated message to passengers, staunch fear or questions, and allow public transportation entities to rebrand themselves completely.
Visual How-To Videos
With only a slim percentage of Americans taking public transit to work each day, there is always the question of ‘how?’ To the everyday user, getting on the bus, train or other metro system may seem easy. But to someone who has never used public transit, this may come with questions and unknowns. Visually showing people how to read bus times, find their destination and plan for their trip can be a game-changer for those on the fence of using these transit options. The point of using video in this regard is to demystify these processes and show the community that using public transit is a more cost-effective and easy mode of getting to a destination. Additionally, video is a strong medium to show a transit agency can be the stewards of safe transportation. By demonstrating safety measures being taken, reliability can be increased and trust instilled.
Beyond that, there are endless possibilities for how-to videos that public transit agencies can produce. How to use a bike rack, how to get to a specific airport, and how to reload a bus/tap card all have the potential to draw in more people.
Meet the Team Video
Like any government agency, public transit is full of energized and passionate people who are dedicated to making a difference.
When trying to appeal to the public, transit authorities should recognize the power behind showing the real people who make these operational efforts possible. Getting this personalized addition shows the public that there are real people making decisions and that there can be trust in these processes. Even posting video recaps of departmental meetings and introducing the decision-makers leads to an influx of trust and confidence.
As the culture surrounding public transit is changed continuously, creating a safe and encouraging space for employees is important. Not only does highlighting employees encourage and influence the work environment, but recruiting efforts will be more effective when a culture of positivity is showcased.
Rebrand Public Transportation
Public transit is an incredible tool that is utilized by many world-wide. Like any product or service though, the marketing and angle that public transit is presented is important to public perception. Increased marketing efforts, and in particular, the use of video, shows a demonstrated effort to increase usage. While public transportation has been affected by cultural implications in the past, there is a chance to demonstrate the value of public transit to all. Whether it’s explaining the eco-friendly impact (or lack thereof) of taking public transit, money-saving efforts, or convenience of not driving, there are serious opportunities to show how impactful these transportation methods can be.
Rebranding transit authorities is no new task. With rebrands holding the potential to completely transform public perception of a transit agency. In Nashville, when their MTA (Metro Transit Authority) went through with a rebrand, one of the top considerations that they took into account was how they can adhere their brand to cultural shifts taking place in the city. As a result, they decided to brand themselves as sleek and current, with a newfound dedication to connecting community members.
Bring Accessibility to the Table
Lastly, accessibility is a huge component of why video is a significantly better option for public transit authorities in their efforts to increase marketing efforts. The ability to add both audio and subtitles allows for anyone to garner value from the video. Beyond that, accessibility is a major issue for many who use public transit. With a need for advocates for those who are disadvantaged and may face unique barriers when it comes to public transit, accessibility is a topic that needs to be discussed more readily. Including videos that explain how to read bus routes, how to ride the bus while in a wheelchair, etc. can help bring serious accessibility to the table.
So What Now?
Video is a tool that provides undeniable advantages for nearly all entities. With public transportation authorities however, video has the possibility to provide educational value, bring a personalized touch, further accessibility efforts, etc. At Goodsides, we are experts in creating better media for government agencies. If you’re ready to bring your agency's marketing to the next level, check www.government.media.com for more information.