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Heading in a new direction…

Trentbarton is a dynamic multi-award winning bus operator based in Heanor, Derbyshire, serving Nottinghamshire, Derbyshire & Leicestershire in the East Midlands for the last 100 years. And they’ve come a long, long way!


Having been recommended by the Velvet bus company, another client of ours, we embarked on our journey of lively travel campaigns with the delightful team at Trentbarton in 2011 and have since developed a strong working relationship.

We kicked off campaign number one with Student Mango, a service specifically for students of the University of Nottingham. Student Mango offers a top-up card allowing students to quickly swipe on and off the bus.

" I never fail to be impressed by the creativity of Alive! - and the new thinking and depth of ideas they bring to the campaigns that they have worked on for us. " - Alex Hornby | Marketing & Communications Director

Campaign objectives included:

  • Promote Student Mango and its benefits
  • Maintain Trentbarton’s position as a quality operator
  • Promote Mango’s add-on discounts at pubs and shops in the city
  • Create promotional material to be displayed within the university

Main challenges involved:

  • Creating branding to appeal to a wider audience of travellers as well as students
  • Timescales to fit with university term times

Our proposed activities centred around a Wild Savings themed fresher’s event, in the shape of a Wild West Rodeo! All supported by a stack of fun and interactive promotional material including website banners, billboard and bus shelter advertising, pocket guides, Z-cards, exhibition panels, a wheel of fortune game and a full schedule of social media activity. By all accounts, a rip-roaring success!

Next was Campaign Indigo, promoting Trentbarton’s quality bus service along a particular route. After a thorough assessment of the services included, a study of the defined target audience and a look at the competition, we presented a number of suggestions. Our campaign strategy concepts included naming of key elements of the service, bus stop advertising, branded building wraps, redesign of bus livery, a VIP red carpet roadshow, goody bag giveaways, luxury branded VIP bus stops, pavement advertising, online advertising, consistent branding across all social media platforms and fun competitions to engage the public. Taking the really good bus company to celebrity status!

Trentbarton work example 

The final and ongoing part of our work with Trentbarton involves an ‘ideas generation’ service for ad hoc campaigns and promotions. An example of this was our recent ‘People of Trentbarton’ campaign, creatively introducing the team of Trentbarton land to the public.

As a bus company that’s built on bright ideas, we’re delighted to be maintaining our ongoing relationship with Trentbarton.