The 2012 North American Effie Effectiveness Index rankings were revealed at the 44th annual Effie Award Gala in New York City. Among the winners was Valley Metro Regional Public Transportation Authority’s “Notes” campaign, which educates new riders on how to use public transportation. The campaign grew out of research conducted by R&R Partners, Valley Metro RPTA’s agency of record, who also conceived and produced the campaign.
“Winning an Effie Award is one of the highest honors an advertising agency can achieve,” said Matt Silverman, managing director of R&R’s Scottsdale office. “We are incredibly proud of how our work for Valley Metro has helped increase bus and train usage by 5.1 percent during the first year of the campaign, which is three times the national average,” he added.
In order to be included in the Effie Effectiveness rankings, Effie Award finalists and winners supplied detailed case studies outlining the challenges they faced and the significant results that were achieved, which were then rigorously evaluated by two rounds of industry experts.
For the Valley Metro “Notes” campaign, R&R Partners conducted research to uncover roadblocks to ridership, then used that data to educate potential commuters that riding the local busses and trains is quick, simple and entertaining—and something people should want to do. To appeal to a broad demographic, R&R Partners recruited five local bands that wrote and recorded eight original songs on how to use public transportation. Original animations were then designed around the music and lyrics and Valley Metro “Notes” was born.
The videos can be seen online at www.ValleyMetro.org/notes. This low cost, multi-year campaign began in November 2010 and was designed to bridge the adoption barrier that too often keeps good candidates for public transportation from making the leap away from car use.
“We listened and responded to the needs and concerns of our citizens by creating a fun and engaging campaign that demystifies riding transit and helps make it a viable option for more people,” said Heidi Gracie of Valley Metro. “The results have been incredible, even with a 30 percent cut in bus service routes we saw ridership gains and an increase in customer satisfaction.”