#RSGB2016 | Publicity & Social Marketing – as it happened

12.00 | 15 November 2016 |

  • Paul Hewson: Telling stories without spinning yarns: how to do data analysis in the 21st Century
  • Dr Mark Sullman: Road safety interventions aimed at young novice drivers – what is the missing ingredient?
  • Paula Wellings: Meaningful messaging, evaluation and behaviour change techniques
  • Andrew Richardson & Tori Brown: Empowering the customer: engaging customers to mould user centric campaigns

This session is being chaired by Maria Boon, head of Gloucestershire Road Safety Partnership

Paul HewsonAssociate Professor in Statistics, Plymouth University
Presentation: Telling stories without spinning yarns: how to do data analysis in the 21st Century

This session outlines a process for interrogating data using relevant examples from social survey and social media. It highlights those aspects of the story telling process that are core in avoiding gross interpretative errors.

Key points:

  • Public health professionals appraise evidence relative to a ‘hierachy’; the study design is critical in determining the type and strength of evidence you may draw from a piece of work.
  • Retrofitting conclusions to datasets can lead to erroneous findings and low quality conclusions.
  • The wealth of accessible data provides opportunities and risks.
  • At best it is possible to triangulate ideas; do related concepts in different datasets say consistent things about the phenomena in which we are interested.
  • Many school curricula teach statistical learning through a ‘Problem, Plan, Data, Analysis, Conclusion’ cycle.


You can always find patterns in data and then find a theory to match it.
Modern data science enables us to combine complimentary datasets and create a ‘generisable’ data platform.
This can help us understand how to better manage the transport system.

Dr Mark Sullman: Senior Lecturer in the Driving Research Group at Cranfield University
Presentation: Road safety interventions aimed at young novice drivers – what is the missing ingredient?

This presentation outlines the evidence to support the various BCTs in other areas of psychology and identifies how we can apply this knowledge to improve road safety interventions aimed at young novice drivers and pre-drivers.

Key points:

  • In other areas of human health an extensive body of research has defined and tested the different methods of changing behaviour, or “behaviour change techniques” (BCT).
  • It appears that behaviour change techniques have been largely ignored in road safety.
  • A recent review of several UK road safety interventions reporting that very few BCTs were used by each programme and that collectively they utilised a very small range of BCTs.


There is no scientific evidence that pre-driver interventions work

With regard to road safety interventions we don’t know which behaviour change techniques work…

…but we do know they have been used effectively with regard to other public health areas (obesity, physical exercise, diet and nutrition)

Six most successful BCTs in public health interventions

  • Prompt self-monitoring behaviour
  • Prompt specific goal setting
  • Provide information on consequence
  • Plan social support/social change
  • Provide instructions
  • Provide feedback on performance

Paula Wellings, county road safety officer, Cornwall Council (stepping in for Tamsin Ferris, Fire & Road Safety Officer, Cornwall Council)
Presentation: Meaningful messaging, evaluation and behaviour change techniques

This presentation outlines Cornwall’s experience of beginning to utilise fire crews in delivering and supporting awareness campaigns and activities to include meaningful messaging, evaluation and behaviour change techniques.


  • Utilising fire crews in road safety campaigns (street conversations, raising awareness etc) to deliver on the road safety team’s behalf
  • Monthly briefings and guided conversations
  • Using pledge cards to prompt behaviour change

Having success with Look, Share, Be Bike Aware (cyclists campaign)

  • Involved fire crews in development of the campaign


Andrew Richardson, co-founder & chief commercial officer, & Tori Brown (via video link), communications & marketing officer, Realsafe Technologies
Presentation: Empowering The Customer: engaging customers to mould user centric campaigns

This session will discuss involving the biking community and stakeholders to create a product through:

  • Concept research and development;
  • Product design and testing; and
  • Market launch, continued engagement and growth.

Key points:

  • Do your customer research. What do you really know about them, their influences, what will evoke a response?
  • Do your market research. Are there other products, websites or campaigns trying to do the same thing? Are there any results? Make an approach to see how well it performed
  • When you have the makings of a product/campaign brief, involve your stakeholders or partners to ensure you’ve covered all key objectives
  • If you’re commissioning an agency or using a new external supplier, do your research. What experience or success do they have with a similar product or campaign
  • Once you have your designs or product wireframes, involve a good external testing company. Companies such as ‘What Users Do’ will take your brief, develop a test plan and recruit a sample of your target audience. What you get in return is detailed testing research including user videos. These show you how your potential customers actually interact or react with your product, website or campaign.
  • Using a testing or research company can also generate useful insights into where your customers hang out online or the types of media they consume. This can help you maximise your budget
  • Get your stakeholders, partners and audience involved in your launch. If you can identify and involve Ambassadors, they can help generate social media traction; and finally
  • Involving your customers throughout this journey often provides invaluable insights that can help steer the development of your product or campaign. They will happily provide testimonials as they’ll feel like product owners


Working closely with customers, partners, stakeholders is crucial.

Campaign launch should only be the start.

Look for opportunities to ‘peak’ your audience’s interest.

Make sure your audience feels active & engaged (part of the journey).

Be relevant to your audience – the more engaged they are, the more active they will be.

Give something back – rewarding customers for their loyalty is critical (loyalty scheme, ambassadors etc).

Listen to audience feedback – seek feedback, the more open and transparent you are the better.

Don’t ignore disillusioned customers – their feedback is valuable, try and bring them back into the fold, don’t be afraid to tackle them head on.



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