Govia Thameslink ‘Open the Door to More’: Steaming

Thameslink“I’m walking on sunshine, wooah; I’m walking on sunshine, woooah; I’m walking on sunshine, woooah; And don’t it feel good!” Well, that is the hope, with the election done and dusted and the weather warming up – fingers crossed – we can finally start thinking about the summer holidays.

Enter a new campaign from Govia Thameslink Railway encouraging people to let the train take the strain. Created by agency TMW, the ‘Open the Door to More’ and is the latest iteration of its ‘Every Stop is a Story’ strategy, running across OOH, display, social, radio and influencer activity.

The three 15’-second spots show train doors revealing different scenes at various stops along the line. From chips on Brighton beach, scuba diving in Worthing, to punting in Cambridge, the creative glides the viewer from scene to scene showing that every stop is a story.

Together, the snapshots weave a narrative of discovery and connection, inviting viewers to embrace the diverse experiences that await them; well, that is the official line.

Tailored six-second videos have been developed to highlight single activities and destinations, aimed at specific audiences based on their life stage, location, and interests.

The campaign will also run on escalator panels inside London’s busiest tube stations, showing places to visit and how long the journey will be. For example, in London’s Victoria Station the panels will show ‘Vineyards in Pulborough, just 8 stops away by train’.

“Dynamic radio” is also being used to create hyper-relevant ads that call out the origin station closest to listeners’ location and list activities and destinations that would inspire day trips, changing throughout the campaign based on listener demographics, location and time of week.

The campaign also taps into insights from Unlimited’s Human Understanding Lab to define key underlying motivations for train travel based on human psychology, which were then used to define drivers of customer behaviours throughout the work.

Govia Thameslink Railway senior marketing manager Alex Briggs said: “TMW’s ability to deliver standout creative work is exceptional, and we are very excited to see the impact of this new campaign. The creative platform ‘Every Stop is a Story’ has already delivered on so many aspects for our brands and business.

“Not only has it been successful in shifting the dial on key brand health metrics, taking us from a transport business that delivers functional commuter journeys to an inspirational travel brand, but importantly it has helped to deliver measurable commercial impact.”

TMW chief creative officer Graeme Noble added: “There’s no shortage of sources to get information on days out – our job was to focus on inspiration rather than instruction. All the executions focus on sparking a sense of discovery – the fun and connection that comes with new trips. By telling less and showing more, we’ve harnessed the emotions that drive why people take days out.”

So, what is the consensus around the Decision Marketing office?

Well, to be fair, this really should be the age of the train – and if they could only ensure they run on time and keep the fares competitive there is no reason why it can’t be. But, sadly, that seems to be a big IF.

Whether the Labour Government’s plans for the railways improve this remains to be seen. In the meantime, this activity does tick all the right boxes, and, as our local railway it points to all the great destinations we have in the South East. After all, who doesn’t want to steam into chips, ice cream and vineyards?

Decision Marketing Adometer: A “right on track”  8 out of 10

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