An industry-funded nationwide marketing campaign to promote the coach sector to new and existing customers still looks set to go ahead despite the disappointment of it not having reached the initial £150,000 target for pledges of support.
Organiser Candice Mason, Director of Business Operations of Tring operator Masons Minibus and Coach Hire, says that commitments from operators and industry stakeholders fell “somewhat short” of that goal despite a late push to secure further pledges. However, she and others involved in the project are now working with the Confederation of Passenger Transport (CPT) to right-size plans to suit the sum that is available.
“While we may all feel disappointed that the original campaign cannot come to fruition, I feel confident that we can pull together an alternative with the traction of CPT behind us,” she says. “What was overwhelming was the level of support from our supplier chain, both financial and in offerings of practical help, and it would be naïve of us not to attempt to utilise such an opportunity.”
CPT Coaching Manager Phil Smith will now lead the project as it moves forwards. Mr Smith has underlined that the campaign is to be directed solely towards coach industry customers and that it will not be involved with the lobbying of politicians or local authorities on policy matters.
He adds that the formulation of messaging, and a strategy to allocate the money that is available, is a work in progress, but media partner Made remains involved. It is hoped that the industry will be promoted using various channels, with decisions still to be made on which workstreams of the coach sector will be featured when.
“There remains a great deal of scope to do something that promotes the coach industry to customers,” says Mr Smith. “We still have considerable support from operators and suppliers.”