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Metrolink

A commuter rail system serving Southern California consisting of seven lines and 55 stations operating on 388.2 miles of rail network.
I-5 Corridor Improvement

Strategy & Media Planning | Buying


Challenges

  • Needed to turn commuting drivers along the I-5 corridor into train riders.
  • Had to help alleviate congestion along the I-5 to help facilitate ongoing, corridor-wide construction projects. 

 

Constraints

  • The Car is King in Southern California. 
  • Needed to hyper-target I-5 freeway commuters.
  • Sensis was only required to develop strategic messaging considerations, media placement and buying. 

 

Solution

  • Created a geo-targeted campaign to increase relevancy – highlighting traffic-related messages along freeway OOH, and serving up ads to gridlocked drivers using Waze.
  • Built up awareness of an alternate solution via the OOH boards and live traffic reads.
  • Provided free trial ride tickets to encourage a test run by commuters, promoted via direct mail (door hangers and post cards), social media ads, Waze, Pandora, and Gmail advertising. 

 

Results

  • Metrolink trains ridership increased up to 4.4% when other train ridership was on a decline.
  • Metrolink has retained 1 out of 5 trial riders.
  • In 2015, 316 Waze users rerouted their GPS destination to a nearby Metrolink station (considered a very strong user action, and a credit to Waze ad effectiveness, which overall boasted a 0.44% CTR in 2015—with a 0.08% benchmark).
  • Door hanger redemption rates for the first two years were up to 3.5% (industry average is 1.0-1.5%).
  • In a survey, billboard ads were highly recalled—Metrolink trial users were more likely to recall the billboards and door-hangers than respondents who did not try the train; none of the respondents had previously taken Metrolink.