By BRIAN BIGELOW | Assistant News Editor
Soon there will be fewer excuses for not using the Peay Pickup trolleys around campus. A slew of new advertising will ensure that students know everything they need to in order to utilize the service.
The APSU “Peay Pickup” trolley service has been included in a Clarksville Transit System (CTS) marketing grant from the Tennessee Department of Transportation (TDOT).
“[We’re] trying to raise awareness of the Peay Pickup service,” said Terri Sterling of Sterling Communications, who is in charge of generating the promotional materials for the project.
The total grant to the CTS is roughly $50,000, said Sterling, adding that approximately $15,000 of which will be devoted to generating promotional materials for the Peay Pickup. According to Sterling, the grant money must be allocated to specific project elements by Tuesday, Feb. 1.
The message of these advertisements will be to inform students of where, when and how to use the Peay Pickup trolley system.
The Peay Pickup was initially implemented as an SGA initiative. The SGA is working in conjunction with Sterling Communications to develop the promotional materials.
The APSU Public Relations office then reviews the advertising content to ensure that it is in keeping with the APSU “brand”.
The promotional material for the Peay Pickup will include, but may not be limited to, a short video made to be featured on You Tube, the Peay Pickup’s new Facebook page, print and online ads placed in The All State and two different yard sign designs as well as banners that will be placed around campus.
“Probably within the next three to four weeks you’ll start seeing something,” Sterling said.
The Facebook page will be a resource for finding updates to transit routes and schedules.
“We felt like there’s a really good service with the Peay Pickup that students aren’t using,” said Jimmy Smith, the Transportation Director for the City of Clarksville.
Smith was responsible for requesting the marketing assistance from TDOT and including the Peay Pickup in that proposal.
“Even if you don’t use the Peay Pickup, you can use the CTS system for free,” said Kenny Kennedy, APSU SGA President. “It’s part of a package deal.” All that is required is that a student present the same CTS card that is used for the Peay Pickup.
CTS is also using the grant money to look into changing their logo as well as their bus colors.
Neither the university nor the CTS actually receive the grant money. The money is paid directly to Sterling Communications, which has a “technical assistance contract” with TDOT, Smith said.
“We’re not direct recipients of the money. We’re direct recipients of the service,” Smith said.
Sterling said she hoped once people try public transportation, they will see that it is “clean, convenient, and safe,” encouraging them to ride more often and to view it as a viable alternative to a car. As more people ride public transit, more routes open up.
“It is a huge economic engine to attract jobs to have a viable transit system,” Sterling said. TAS