Invincible. In many ways, we want our youth to feel this way. It’s every parent’s wish that their children should feel that the world is their oyster, and they can take it by storm.
But university-bound students’ sense of invincibility often extends far beyond their academic potential. They take risks outside the classroom – some good, some bad. Despite mandatory helmet laws and visible safety regulations, universities across Canada are struggling with getting student cyclists to practice safe biking.
In response, our pro-bono client, Share the Road, and a group of eight Ontario universities came to us to promote an initiative for safer cycling on and around campus.
Our research concluded that bringing cyclists together in a like-minded community would allow the safety message to be woven in fluidly with cool cycling news, initiatives and events.
“Students need a carrot, rather than a stick,” says Brian Gahan, Top Drawer Creative EVP and Chief Creative Officer. “The UCycle initiative promotes safety and enhances the campus cycling experience through communities loaded with prizes, tips, discounts and more.”
TDC’s campaign, currently underway at eight participating universities, consists of inspirational, campus-specific videos and collateral to draw attention to the initiative and showcase key messages.
The campus-specific videos (you can see Western’s here), along with radio advertising, posters and social media – all featuring a crisp visual identity by Dave Nighbor of 9lives Design, who also created the UCycle.ca website – encourage students to join dedicated Facebook communities where seasoned cyclists and first-time riders alike are encouraged to ride their bikes, safely.
Paid student ambassadors promote the programs on campus, and maintain the Facebook pages for Lakehead University, University of Windsor, Western University, University of Waterloo, McMaster University, Sheridan College, Trent University and Queen’s University where students can watch videos (like this one, from Western, on how to load your bike on and off a bus) and get the scoop on cycling news, event listings, maintenance clinics, discounts and prizes — including $50 gift cards at local restaurants, VIA Rail travel vouchers, new bikes, and $500 grants for students to put towards cycling projects at their schools.
Please visit www.ucycle.ca for more information.
At Top Drawer Creative, money is just one part of the reward, but that doesn’t mean our accounting team isn’t beyond stellar.
Controller (a great title, you’ve got to admit) Jelena Banovic oversees TDC’s accounting staff and financial operations. Since coming on board in the spring, Jelena has created copious efficiencies and won the hearts of our staff with her positive and caring personality.
But our books aren’t the only area where Jelena’s making strides. This October, inspired by the TDC’s active living ethos, Jelena will be among the participants in the Scotiabank Waterfront Half-Marathon. She’s been training all year long – weight-training and conquering 10K and 15K races in preparation for the 21K event on Oct. 19th.
“I find that participating in other races throughout the summer really helps in getting ready for the big one. I’m a lot more motivated to train when I know that a race is coming up than completely on my own,” she says.
For more on Jelena and the TDC team, poke around our About Us page – and please reach out! We’d love to hear from you.