Having recently received news that our latest creative work for Arriva Trains Wales has been short-listed for a CIM Canmol: Wales Marketing award we thought it best we share how exactly we went about developing this top-quality piece of work.
Arriva Trains Wales, the leading Welsh transport brand, had taken a five year break from TV advertising when they approached us with a brief for “Make Me Smile”. The client was looking to achieve widespread national exposure through a high profile, high reach and highly effective promotional effort. Furthermore, there was an appetite within the business to re-explore television. As a full service advertising agency, we had the expertise and vision to take the project from brief to delivery, providing not only the media planning and buying function but also producing the creative execution.
The objectives of the campaign, as laid out by the client, were clear.

  • Challenge the myth that rail travel is expensive and unpunctual
  • Communicate this through a clear and simple message
  • Ignite a push in the sale of advance-travel tickets

Research revealed that whilst trains during commuter hours was at full capacity, there were seats that needed to be filled on day-time trains. The campaign needed to target people travelling for the sake of leisure as opposed to business. Furthermore, Mosaic profiling prompted us to target the financially conscious traveller, less likely to own their own cars.
Using this rationale we developed a media plan that was heavily focused on day-time TV slots, through national broadcasters ITV1 Wales and S4C. We needed to target stay-at-home parents, students and people in between jobs looking for cheap daytime activities.
The client was also taken by the (at the time) new TV advertising platform, Sky Adsmart. We were able to put the brand forward as one of the first 100 businesses to work with the format. The opportunities available through Sky Adsmart allowed us to target specific audiences based on their location and customer demographic, and ensured a higher rate of audience viewing.
From a creative perspective, summing up the full offering of a national transport provider in a 30-second TV ad was a challenge best addressed through animation. The onbrand colour scheme was complemented by the cheery music and upbeat tone of voice. Destination-specific visual cues and the hilly terrain spoke to the Welsh audience. Furthermore, the fluid transitions and continuously featured railtrack aimed to take the viewer on a journey, referencing the theme of transport.

Not only has the campaign been well received by our peers, but Arriva Trains Wales ticket sales have seen a great boost as a result of the TV advertising push. The travellers are happy. The client is happy. We are happy.
When it comes to media planning/buying and design/branding projects, leading Welsh brands turn to us for a helping hand. Time we have a chat?