Seattle Department of Transportation

Seattle Department of Transportation | Play Like a Parking Pro

Creative Campaign Development |
Video Production | Design


The Situation

Parking. Just about everyone deals with it and talks about it. Team Soapbox was hired by the Seattle Department of Transportation (SDOT) to educate drivers about planned changes to on-street parking hours and rates in select neighborhoods around Seattle. Our challenge was to get drivers to pay attention before they get a parking ticket because they weren’t expecting the changes.

The Approach

SDOT charged Team Soapbox with developing a well-rounded and targeted public education campaign. Team Soapbox led the team that developed the visual concept and brand, messaging and tagline and created a multi-layered campaign that included a large advertising buy, production of a video that ran as a television ad and lives on the SDOT website,  as well as community outreach and grassroots marketing.

Playing off the notion that Seattleites like to be in the know, we created a theme related to knowing the rules of a game with a Monopoly-like graphic. Soapbox created three different graphics to be used in different areas of the city that would be seeing different changes, directing people to the SDOT parking website for more information about the changes.

Additionally, to raise awareness of the parking changes, Soapbox coordinated and managed the placement of ads with more than 20 major print, radio television and ethnic media outlets in Seattle. We dispatched street team members to farmers' markets and the International District to hand out postcard describing the changes. We also distributed postcards to retail locations in all of the areas where hours and rates would be changing.

The Results

Team Soapbox evaluated the success of the ads based on impressions, reach, and other metrics. We analyzed feedback received at community events and during street outreach, and feedback from retail locations. Additionally, SDOT received few complaints about the parking changes, which was an indication that people were getting the message and understanding the changes ahead of time.

This campaign was recognized with a PRSA Certificate of Excellence in 2018.