Hit or miss? Chiltern Railways commuters treated to witty announcements

Having a laugh.

Commuters between Birmingham and London are to be entertained by 'comedy announcements' as part of a stunt by Taylor Herring for UK TV comedy channel Gold. The channel has collaborated with Chiltern Railways to offer staff training by Blackadder star Tony Robinson. The stunt, which advises passengers with 'noisy iPods' to get a better taste in music, aims to attract a younger audience to the channel.


Clare Pring, Partner and MD of brand, Ketchum-Pleon

I confess my heart sank when I first heard this. As a commuter, I know only too well the likely consumer reaction - head down, no eye contact and do not crack a smile.

But all credit to Taylor Herring. The coverage was pretty good, with BBC News, Yahoo, MSN, Metro, The Independent, FT, the Daily Express, London Evening Standard and The Sun all picking it up positively, as well as various local newspapers and online media. The execution was well done.

But I do question the targeting - is Tony Robinson really quite on the button for reaching a broad (and particularly younger) audience? Plus, in this 'always on' world it remains to be seen how a one-off stunt of this nature helps deliver, as part of an ongoing programme, a long-term impact for the client.


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