We recently helped South Yorkshire Passenger Transport Executive (SYPTE) to understand reasons for use and non-use of public transport among young people aged between 14 and 16 years. This will ensure that future marketing messages effectively address this group's travel priorities and needs.
The research was split into two phases. Phase one included 4 on-line focus groups and phase two gathered additional feedback via our on-line portal e-luminate. On-line approaches were deemed the most appropriate means to explore issues among this age group.
We felt that the anonymity of this method would elicit honest responses via technology with which this audience was familiar, as well as being a fun and engaging way to gather more in-depth qualitative feedback. It also allowed marketing materials designed to change attitudes towards public transport to be tested. This approach also provided greater flexibility in the way that participants communicated - including text-based responses, videos, photos and collages.
By understanding perceptions of public transport among this age group, our client was able to devise initiatives and incentives to encourage behaviour change. Examples included new ticketing offerings and travel information better suited to the needs of young people.