GoDurham Comic Activity Book to Celebrate Free Comic Book Day

Target Audience: The audience for GoDurham's comic activity book were younger GoDurham riders, bus operator and Durham families interested in comics and local art.

Strategy Objective:The strategy for this entry was to take advantage of local talent and work with Durham native and comic book artist Jamal Walton to craft an activity comic book and by extension promote local artists in the community. GoDurham then worked with local comic book stores in Durham, NC (Atomic Empire and Ultimate Comics) to have the comic activity books distributed on Free Comic Book Day in their stores. These stores were promoted on GoDurham's social media platforms as places to pick up the comic and celebrate the Free Comic Book day holiday itself.

Situation Challenge: Due to the pandemic and the National Bus Operator shortage, there is a lot of excess pressure and stress on bus operators. GoDurham wanted to have a family/kid centered event to show appreciation to bus operators, using comic book themes as a way to share the sentiment that bus operators are super heroes to their community. GoDurham also wanted to use Free Comic Book day to showcase local talent in the Durham community.

Results Impact: The GoDurham Activity Comic book garnered compliments from both parents and kids, with parents being appreciative to see work that represents Durham and kids being excited to color the comic portion of the book. Local stores Atomic Empire and Ultimate Comics appreciated the collaboration and being promoted on GoDurham's social. The comic has also been distributed internally with GoDurham bus operators being excited to have a fun booklet to provide to their children that features them as "heroes."

Why Submit: 2021 was the first year that GoDurham celebrated Free Comic Book day. GoDurham's marketing team had a great idea for a story which piggybacked on previous campaigns highlighting bus operators as heroes for their service. GoDurham's marketing team drafted the story and then with the assistance of local artist Jamal Walton became a beautiful piece showing what bus operators do for the community (with a super hero theme). GoDurham has now begun an annual tradition of creating a comic book for the Free Comic Book holiday. Many children who picked up the comic had their faces light up on hearing that the artist who made the comic lives where they live, in Durham NC. For its impact and the joy it's brought to both staff and families, GoDurham believes it deserves an AdWheel award.