Monday, June 16, 2008

Marketing Bike Share Programs:
A Look at "Conquest of an Idea"

--Feature: "Consumption Junction w/John Rooks"--

Community Bike Share programs are not new. They are not necessarily innovative. They are simple ideas that can create a little community and reduce a little carbon load. The latest one is in Portland, Maine – my fair city. Oh, and I’m one of the organizers. The staff at Dwell Creative wanted to create a cultural moment. The vehicle we chose – a bike. A white bike.

The cultural moment is an opportunity to create public dialogue - in this case about pedestrian friendly cities, the environmental footprint of car commuting (more than half of all Americans live less than 5 miles from where they work), and the pure joy of riding a bike.

Good advertising creates these cultural moments. Really good advertising inspires change. It may be a shift in brand loyalty, it may be a change in behavior. This "Conquest of the Idea" is the stuff of much “green” advertising. We seek to alter a negative behavior of use, to a green attribute to shift loyalty to our products.

But back to the bikes….the naysayers say the bikes will be stolen and vandalized. And they may be right. So we already have the second fleet already donated by the community and ready to paint and launch…when they are.

For more information on the White Bike Bike Share Program go to

Consumption Junction is a feature column focusing on culture, advertising and the ethical consumer written by John Rooks. John is the President of DWELL Creative, a progressive advertising and marketing agency voted one the Top 25 agencies by LOHAS Journal.

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