how to spend £100k marketing a bus service

Unfortunately for agencies like us, the real proof of the pudding for public transport isn't in the marketing of a product but in the quality of the product itself.

Marketing a poor product well will only highlight its inadequacies, and ultimately lead to it failing quicker. Why sell something that you know deep down needs massive improvement?

I had a meeting with a well known managing director of a bus company a couple of years ago, and got posed a hypothetical question - "If i gave you £100k to market our company, how would you spend it?".

From researching the company pre-meeting, the first thing that came in to my head (although I would have still given the same answer given longer to think about it) was to offer half the money back so they could sort out the well publicised punctuality and attitude issues the company was suffering from.

I don't think it was the answer this particular managing director was expecting, or indeed wanted to hear. Suffice to say our fledgling relationship didn't go any further.

In short, get your house (or in this case your bus) in order before you waste £50k telling people how great it is, only for them to quickly find out it isn't all that great at all.