National Express gets in gear for summer travel push

National ExpressCoach operator National Express is returning to TV advertising with the launch of a new campaign, designed to position the brand as a modern, reliable, and great value way to travel.

Scheduled to run from this month to September, the Express Yourself campaign has been devised by agencies mSix&Partners – the agency network which is a joint venture between The&Partnership and GroupM – and One Black Bear.

The primary business objective of the campaign is to position National Express as the UK’s leading public transport provider. To achieve this, people need to be persuaded to switch car and train travel for coaches, ensuring customers use, reuse, and recommend National Express, reinforcing a message that the company is a force for good.

mSix&Partners is implementing a multi-channel, three-pillared approach, including social media activity through AV and influencer collaborations, while implementing regional ads designed to reach the people best served by National Express routes. It will also embrace always-on performance channels, including social, display, and PPC to convert in-market demand.

The creative execution is designed to challenge negative perceptions of coach travel by bringing to life the modern and comfortable interior of the National Express fleet – which offer the same fold down tray table, Wi-Fi, and charging ports found on trains – and highlighting it as a reliable and cost-effective way to get to your destination.

Built around the brand’s established Express Yourself positioning, this approach “celebrates all the joy and wonder that National Express makes possible with its great value, high-quality services”, the firm insists.

At the heart of the campaign is a 30” TV spot that features a National Express coach, showing the anticipation and fun of a typical journey, all brought to life by the remixed vocals of Charles Wright’s classic Express Yourself.

National Express UK marketing director Catherine Woolfe said: “We are changing outdated perceptions of coach travel and want to normalise coach travel and encourage more people to choose our coaches as their preferred option to get around.

“We have implemented lots of improvements to the network and onboard experience over recent years and this campaign aims to showcase all the great benefits of travelling with National Express, putting our brand in front of a much wider audience.

“Together we have developed a comprehensive campaign that drives maximum impact, attention and emotion, and helps us expand into a broader modal shift audience.”

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