Trinity Metro ZIPZONE Video Campaign

Target Audience: The Trinity Metro ZIPZONE ridership video campaign was broadly directed at commuters, families, business and leisure travelers, ages 25-54, with annual household incomes greater than $30,000 and an interest in restaurants and entertainment. This on-demand rideshare micro-transit service is often used by those who are transit-dependent, as well as business commuters for first-mile, last-mile needs. In addition, efforts were made to target messaging to residents in select ZIP codes located within the Mercantile, Southside and South Tarrant ZIPZONE boundaries.

Strategy Objective:As ZIPZONE is a ridesharing transit solution that uses smartphone technology and a fleet of dedicated vehicles to provide trips within specific service boundaries, the team quickly identified digital solutions to communicate program changes. These included social media and digital programmatic ads, where "video is king" and messages could be targeted to specific ZIP codes. A series of upbeat videos were assembled to showcase typical ZIPZONE uses – going to lunch, grocery shopping and entertainment such as a happy hour outing. Videos publicized the fare integration, expansion of zones and operational hours, as well as the ease of booking rides through the program's mobile app.

Situation Challenge: Because two of the agency's four ZIPZONE service areas launched during the pandemic, this on-demand public transit option was slow to gain ridership and secure brand awareness. The agency quickly adapted to consumer needs by increasing the service hours and boundaries, as well as enacting fare adjustments and promotions to motivate riders. ZIPZONE fares were soon integrated into Trinity Metro multi-ride ticketing options to allow for free transfers to bus and rail services. These program enhancements required strategic marketing responses to educate the community.

Results Impact: Trinity Metro ZIPZONE ridership experienced immediate positive results once the video campaign launched in March 2021. Monthly ridership counts grew by triple-digital percentage points every month from April 2021 through the end of the calendar year. The total overall annual ride count was 246% greater in 2021 than that in 2020.

Why Submit: Trinity Metro's ability to increase ridership with this on-demand rideshare service has resulted in ZIPZONE now being one of the agency's highlighted services. It was even heavily discussed as a forward-thinking transit option during Fort Worth's mayoral election public forums and debates in 2021 . The success in generating ridership was a combination of operational flexibility and marketing savvy .