Northern Rail: On Track for Greater Returns

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Northern Rail, the largest train operator in Britain, continues its push into multi-channel marketing in a new partnership with full-service digital marketing agency Positive.

Northern Rail

Northern Rail is on track for greater returns

“Since last summer we have rolled out a swift test and learn strategy combined with deep customer insight. This has led us to implementing a highly targeted multi-channel approach which is primarily digital.” - Phil Gates, Head of Retailing and Marketing

The rail company doubled its ROI over the past 12 months and has now appointed Positive to upgrade its PPC, digital and social advertising activities to get on track for even greater returns in 2015.

The rollout of Northern’s multi-channel marketing in last summer saw its ROI double and Positive’s appointment is hoped to build on this success. Positive is supported by creative agency Guerilla in its ventures with Northern.

Positive was appointed after a successful history of working with Phil Gates, Head of Retailing and Marketing for Northern, in his previous role as Marketing Director for Rank Interactive.

“Since last summer we have rolled out a swift test and learn strategy combined with deep customer insight. This has led us to implementing a highly targeted multi-channel approach which is primarily digital.” says Gates.

“We have recruited a new team, appointed best in class agency partners and are achieving above expectation results from the marketing plan. Now is the time to push for more.”

About Northern Rail:

Northern Rail is the largest train operator in Britain, providing 2,500 local and regional train services every day across the north of England, serving a population of nearly 15m. There are now 96million passenger journeys made on our network each year, 47% more than when we started our franchise in December 2004.

In April 2014, Northern Rail achieved a franchise best score of 95.26% in the Public Performance Measure (PPM) for UK railways.    

Northern Rail is operated in joint venture by Serco and Abellio. This joint venture combines Serco’s world-class service credentials and Abellio’s unrivalled transport industry expertise. Serco ran the highly successful Docklands Light Railway for 17 years while Abellio delivers bus and rail services to over 650,000 passengers in the UK and Germany every day. In addition to Northern Rail, Abellio have the 25-year concession for Merseyrail, which provides urban train services in Merseyside.

Northern is proud to have achieved the Silver standard for both its Investors in People and Investors in Diversity accreditation. Some of our other recent honours include:

  •     Women in Rail, Diversity and Inclusion, Security Excellence and Sustainability – Rail Business Awards 2014
  •     Transport, Storage and Distribution Sector – RoSPA Occupational Health and Safety Awards 2014 (Northern is the first transport provider to take this accolade six times)
  •     Special Award for Sustainability – North of England Excellence Awards 2014
  •     Operations and Performance – Railway Industry Innovation Awards 2014

About Positive:

Positive is a digitally-driven marketing agency that creates positive connections to deliver measurable results. We drive profitable sales by understanding consumers and the lives they lead in today's always on world. We discover where they hang out, what they do, what they look at, search for and buy. We listen to them and understand what motivates them - and what doesn't. By using our unique 3i's methodology of insight / ideas / infrastructure, we are able to create and deliver personal, effective and compelling messages and multi-channel campaigns.

Like consumers and brands, we are unique. We come from a wide variety of backgrounds and our rich, deep and varied expertise includes data scientists, client-side marketers, creative story tellers, planners, UX and business analysts, search specialists and front and back-end web developers. This myriad of creative and technical skillsets and depth of experience sets us apart but, above all, the one thing that connects us all is a can-do attitude that we apply to our clients' business each and every day. And that's what really makes Positive.

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