Midland Mainline has appointed Isobel to handle its £1.5m advertising account following a competitive pitch against a number of undisclosed agencies. Incumbent Poulters, the Leeds-based agency, did not repitch.
The pitch, overseen by the AAR, was run by the train operator’s new head of marketing Mark Turley, who joined from sister company National Express last month.
A source close to Isobel says the agency has been asked to create some “tactical holding advertising” to run ahead of a much larger campaign, which will include TV, outdoor and online, which will launch next spring.
It is understood that the brief for the campaign is to improve communications with passengers and raise awareness of the Midland Mainline brand as well as simplify the fare structures.
Midland Mainline, which is owned by the National Express Group, is bidding to keep its East Midlands train franchise against Arriva, First Group and Stagecoach Group. A contract will be awarded next November and will run until 2015.
Isobel has also won the £2m advertising account for Streetcar, a car-sharing club that allows consumers to hire cars by the hour. It is the first time the company has appointed an agency.
The company hopes that a campaign will help to raise the profile of the service ahead of the launch of a rival US scheme, Zip Cars, launching in the UK.
Isobel is now working on a campaign to position Streetcar as the credible car club in a bid to grow its market share.