As one of the fastest growing cities in the Midwest, it is becoming increasingly important for Columbus to find efficient ways to provide the community with alternative modes of transportation.
In an effort to improve the city’s commuting options, Columbus recently competed against 77 cities nationwide to win the Smart City Challenge in 2016. Now, with $40 million in funding from the U.S. Department of Transportation and another $10 million from Vulcan Inc., Columbus is leading the way on cutting edge urban planning and transportation practices.
To further support the city’s efforts to create more cost effective and environmentally safe commuting options, The Mid-Ohio Regional Planning Commission (MORPC) and 6 other Metropolitan Planning Organizations (MPOs) recently helped to develop a new Transportation Demand Management (TDM) platform, designed to reduce single occupant vehicle (SOV) travel through free ride-matching services as well as other alternative forms of transportation such as walking, biking, and public transit. The goal of this was to reduce congestion in the region, saving commuters on their fuel costs and improving the environment.
In order to increase awareness for the new program, MORPC and the other MPOs partnered with Origo to develop a new brand and campaign strategy, helping to promote the different ridematching services and alternative transportation options offered.
Research & Discovery
To begin, we conducted comprehensive research of the internal and external stakeholders in this initiative to help us gain important insights on recommendations for the new brand and campaign strategy. This included:’
- Comprehensive Research: We conducted surveys amongst each of the seven MPOs to help provide a brief summary of the existing conditions, program expectations, and brand goals for the new platform.
New Brand Strategy
Origo then used the insights from the Research & Discovery Phase to develop a new brand strategy. This included:
- A Naming Strategy: To begin the branding process, we developed three (3) naming strategies for the new brand, each with the goal of encouraging individuals across the state to take part in ride matching services and alternative forms of transportation.
- From the three naming concepts and taglines presented, we conducted a focus group to gauge the effectiveness of each direction. From the results, Origo recommended to move forward with the name “Gohio Commute”, creating a sense of energy and excitement around alternative forms of transportation.
- During this phase, we also developed the tagline “A Smarter Way,” reminding commuters that there are many smart ways to travel.
- Visual Identity: As part of the new brand strategy, we also developed a new logo design that advocated themes of movement, speed, and roadways. In this approach, we also developed a new color pallet and graphic elements that presented a modern and sleek feel for the new brand.
- Brand Architecture: Once establishing the name and visual strategy for the new brand, we helped develop a brand architecture, aligning a logo lockup and color palette for each of the different MPOs and their associated regions.
Promoting The Gohio Program: After creating the new brand strategy, Origo helped to increase awareness for the new brand by developing an integrated marketing strategy, Rethink Your Ride, to help further promote the new program and connect more Ohioans to the tools and education to become more sustainable commuters. As part of this new integrated marketing strategy, we helped develop the following outreach tactics:
- A motion graphics video that was implemented on social media and other ad placements, promoting the new brand and website as well as providing education on different ride matching services and commuting options.
- Outreach strategies, including digital ads, social media campaigns, print ads, and environmental signage on CoGo bike stands, helping to connect target audiences to sustainable commuting options.
- A media plan was developed to increase traffic to the new microsite and boost public awareness on sustainable commuting options through print, digital, environmental, and radio advertising.
The new campaign launched in August of 2017 and is already reaching thousands of commuters across Ohio, targeting the general public. Furthermore, we are also executing tactics to focus on specific demographics, such as the Hispanic and Somali population through radio spots and other digitally-focused strategies.
Each of us play a role in making Columbus a more clean and commuter-friendly city. Origo is proud to be part of the movement to improve urban planning and transportation opportunities throughout Central Ohio, helping to reduce road congestion and improve the environmental impact of our city.
To learn more about Gohio Commute, click here, and sign up today!