A marketing campaign to launch London Midland's new Birmingham to London service has been crowned “Marketing Campaign of the Year” at the 2011 Rail Business Awards.
It is the first time in the Awards' 14 year history that any company has won in the same category three years in a row.
The aim of the campaign was to establish London Midland's new service – which competes with established train and coach companies – as the new best way to get to the capital, using the strapline 'Every 20 minutes for less than £20' to simply highlight the key features.
Strong, high impact design, with messaging focusing on the high frequency and low price ensured that the advertising stood out both on the internet and on the High Street. The campaign covered a wide range of different media encompassing everything from Twitter to mailshots, as well as London Midland's own advertising sites on its stations and trains.
To keep awareness higher for longer, the campaign also included PR activity, centring around the number 20. This included a scavenger hunt for 20 people, a 20% off sale for the first 20 days and a competition to win 20 concert ticket in London.
The campaign follows the trebling of frequency of the Birmingham to London service in September 2011 and has became London Midland's most successful to date, with passenger numbers growing by over 100%.
Rail Business Awards' category Judge Roy Campbell praised the campaign for its evidence of thinking, solid execution and outcomes.
Commenting on the award, London Midland's Head of Marketing David Whitley said: “Our new Birmingham to London service is a real success story, so we're very proud to have been recognised for the way it was launched. We're also delighted to have won this award three years in a row - it's great to be able to work with such a talented team.”
The company was also runner-up in the Customer Information and Service Excellence category, being highly commended by the judges for its work engaging and informing passengers via the social networking tool, Twitter.
This is the third time that the London Midland Twitter account has been formally recognised over the last year, having won the Putting Passengers First category at the 2011 National Rail Awards as well as being highly-commended at the 2010 Rail Business Awards in the PR campaign category.