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MyWay needs better promotion

By ML-585 - 7 March 2011 8

myway card

Transport for Canberra’s long-awaited MyWay ticketing system was launched today, but you could be forgiven for not noticing.

When the Nightrider service ended on the last weekend of February, one of the main criticisms was its lack of promotion. So the lack of promotion thus far of MyWay seems like déjà-vu all over again.

There have been many press releases and media interviews regarding the new system as well as articles in the RiotACT and ACTBus.net, but where is the advertising? The most obvious place to advertise a new bus ticketing system is on the buses themselves. But apart from a few brochures in the buses, actual advertising is nowhere to be seen.

The Redex bus service which commenced in November 2009 is a perfect example of how to advertise – nearly every bus in the ACTION fleet had an internal advertisement for Redex and many also had external ads. There were also radio ads to further promote the service.

Online promotion of MyWay also leaves a lot to be desired. A google search for “MyWay” did not return the official website on the first page – the only mention on the first page was an ABC News article. “MyWay Canberra” and “MyWay ACTION” performed better, although for both the official webpage was ranked number 4.

There has also been next to no social network promotion. On Twitter the only official mentions have come through @TAMSmediaroom with unofficial promotion from @ACTBus and @ACTION_Buses; while on Facebook, MyWay has no official presence: there is only an unofficial MyWay page and promotion from the ACTBus page.

So what more needs to be done to promote MyWay? Here are a few thoughts:

  • every bus to have an internal advertisement about the system (this may be in the works already)
  • external advertising on up to 25% of the bus fleet
  • AdShel bus shelter ads – especially at major bus stops
  • register an easier to remember URL such as www.myway.act.gov.au (URLs such as myway.info, myway.com, myway.com.au are already taken)
  • paid Google advertising for MyWay searches
  • internet search optimisation for MyWay website
  • internet advertising in Canberra media sites such as The Canberra Times and the RiotACT

(Disclaimer: the author is responsible for twitter account @ACTION_Buses, and has written/edited some of the MyWay content on ACTBus.net)

UPDATE: This in from Transport For Canberra:

Note that prior to the publication of this article, the ACT Government had already organised
advertising through RiotACT to run until April. This advertising is part of a comprehensive communication campaign which includes radio and print advertising, various flyers that have been on buses for several weeks, messages on TV screens in buses, staff visiting bus stations for the last two weeks, displays at places like the Royal Canberra Show and outside the Canberra Centre, a dedicated website, posters at recharge agents. Posters, including tag off reminders, are also being installed on buses throughout the transition period to MyWay.

The next MyWay roadshow visit is City Walk outside the Canberra Centre on Thursday 10 March 2011 from 10 am to 1.30 pm.

For more information check the website at www.transport.act.gov.au or call 13 17 10.

What’s Your opinion?


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8 Responses to
MyWay needs better promotion
Keijidosha 9:13 am 08 Mar 11

Why does MyWay need to be promoted? It is a mandatory ticketing system, not a product that needs buyers. If you hadn’t noticed the flyers, brochures, adverts, or the tagging machines on the buses then you need to practice less ostrich-like tendencies, or turn off your iPod and take in what is going on around you.

RandomPoster 8:50 am 08 Mar 11

I am surprised that there has been little discussion on the fact that if you don’t tag off you get charged $4 rather than $2.52….

http://www.transport.act.gov.au/myway/fares.html

“A condition of travel using a MyWay card requires passengers to tag on and off the bus. This process provides valuable travel data to better plan bus services. Following a transition period until 30 June 2011, if you do not tag off you will be charged the standard cash fare for the trip ($4.00 for adults and $2.00 for concession).”

KB1971 8:31 am 08 Mar 11

If you are a regular bus commuter & you dont know that Myway is coming in then you must have your head in the sand. It has been advertised on the TV’s in the newer buses & as Eirlys said, with the failing magnetic strip system giving so many propblems for so long it would be hard not to know.

Is it really worth a 300 word winge.

Dacquiri 12:33 am 08 Mar 11

As soon as I heard that the new system would require passengers to ‘tag off’, I assumed — as you would, yes? — that there would of course be prominent signs in every bus reminding passengers: ‘Don’t forget to tag off!’. But…nothing! If they can’t even do the bleedin’ obvious, not sure what hope there is for the more challenging stuff.

Eirlys 9:32 pm 07 Mar 11

I catch the bus everyday. Over the last few months ever person using a paper ticket has had a free ride, because the old ticketing machines are going caput, and flashing beside these machines have been a bright myway machine. They have been handing out flyers, and if you saw the line in the myway office in Civic this morning then it would be hard to think it needed more promotion. That being said, it would be good if they did have posters up in the buses. But surely given the free rides, the new machines and the information being handed out at the interchange (I speak only for Civic, so I am sorry about that) a person would have to be at least aware of a new system, aware enough to want to look it up.

thy_dungeonman 7:33 pm 07 Mar 11

As I got off the 300 today at Civic there was women waiting at the bus door handing out myway pamphlets yelling “myway starts today”. I ignored her so I could get my bike off, besides which I have 2 paper tickets and I won’t be able to cash those in until April apparently so there’s no point getting one yet.

AussieRodney 6:15 pm 07 Mar 11

About as good as the Night Rider promotion, huh?

CanRaiders 5:43 pm 07 Mar 11

Would also have been an idea if the Belconnen MyWay office was actually open… Or at least have an ACTION rep at the Belconnen interchange!

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