Wednesday, 10 October 2012

TTC union tries to “ride” $1 million PR train

Being in the first semester of a four-year PR degree, I continuously look for real life examples to try and conceptualize the topics and ideas discussed in class. No better of an opportunity presented itself then when I stumbled across a blog post, whilst using my RSS reader of course, stating that the TTC union – representing over nine thousand workers – has launched a $1 million PR campaign to try and show the TTC workers in a different light, in midst of a five cent fare hike.

The TTC is considering a five cent fare hike in 2013. Chair Karen Stintz says, “If adopted, the increase would apply to tokens and Metropasses, raising the price of the monthly pass by about $30 a year. “

“Charging an extra nickle would generate another $18-million a year for the TTC”, said Ms. Stintz, “but that is still $12-million short of what the transit agency needs to balance its books”. 

Could this short fall be the result of frustrated customers vowing not to continue paying increasing amounts for a service that doesn’t work?

With the current negative stigma attached to the TTC, there is nothing a one million dollar PR campaign can’t fix, right?

This new $1 million PR campaign is trying to shed light on the workers, who continue to labour tirelessly but for the most part remain behind the scenes.

The idea of “connecting with our local 113” maybe be a good one, but bribing the public with monthly metro passes to “Like” and comment their your social media pages is not the way to go about.

Being only a PR fledgling, for much less, I could’ve told the TTC union that trying to establish a meaningful two-way conversation with their customers in an online community is best done not bribing and using other poor ethical PR tactics.

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