In its continued digital marketing drive, train operator First TransPennine Express (FTPE) has been working with digital agency Code Computerlove ( <; ) to create two new campaigns to target key audiences, students and Edinburgh Festival goers.

The student campaign is an exclusive online-only deal to 16-25 year olds, offering half price train fares if they book online using their
16-25 Railcard.

Code's FTPE account manager, Ian Rabagliati said: "To drive traffic to the section of the website promoting the deal, we are running an online banner advertising campaign on Facebook and other key youth sites, and have designed email marketing tools targeting students to book train travel online. The campaign uses the strapline "It's cheaper by train, because there's more to life." People are being targeted via the FTPE database.

First TransPennine Express is also launching a microsite this month to capitalise on visitors travelling to Edinburgh's Fringe Festival and other Scottish festivals. The site is being supported by an e-marketing campaign and PR.

Code's Ian Rabagliati added: "FTPE is sponsoring elements of the Fringe Festival this year so we have created a microsite that provides details of events taking place throughout the summer, as well as a promotion to win tickets, travel and accommodation for these events. The microsite is being supported by PR, email marketing and off-line marketing. The
festivals run in August."

These latest campaigns follow the success of First TransPennine's Liverpool Capital of Culture microsite, which has generated huge interest and an increase in train bookings.

Dave Crocker, marketing manager for First TransPennine Express, said, "Our objective when we appointed Code last year was for the website, whose address appears on virtually all informational and promotional material, to become the central focus of an active, stimulating and creative business generator.

"Putting digital at the heart of our marketing strategy is really working for us. Our digital campaigns have resulted in an 85% increase in online ticket sales in 2007/08 and even our paid search campaigns have been yielding a nine to one return on investment, higher than our forecast and more than traditional advertising has done in the past. As a result, we will be continuing with targeted campaigns to drive ticket sales and encourage people to make a leisure journey by train."

First TransPennine Express was launched in February 2004 and runs services between major northern cities and towns - including Scotland, The Lake District, Yorkshire, Lancashire, Merseyside and Greater Manchester.

Published on: 12:00AM on 19th June 2008