Sell Campaign 5: Raising Awareness Of The Cycle Highway

  1. Plan
  2. Design and Build
  3. Sell
  4. Evaluate

Background and aim

Billboard sign beside greenway and road Signage showing entrance to Comber Greenway cycle highway near Belfast

There is often a lack of awareness of cycle highway infrastructure. Many people consider cycling unsafe because they believe they have to mix with traffic on roads. However, the cycle highway or greenway provide a traffic-free route and if more cyclists were aware of them, inevitably more people would use them. This campaign aims to raise awareness of the cycle highway through promotional activities.

  • In order to use the cycle highway people need to be aware of it and where it goes
  • Awareness of safe, traffic-free routes will encourage more use of the route and cycling as a mode of transport.
  • By raising awareness this will increase people cycling to work by bike using the cycle highway.
  • This project focuses on individual factors – using information and communication to increase knowledge of the existence and benefits of the cycle highway.

Primary audience

General public and in particular commuters using roads close to the cycle highway.


  • Project staff  
  • Working group of partners and key stakeholders
  • Existing promotional materials
  • Budget to design and produce resources
  • Materials developed through other campaigns: 1, 7, 8, 9 & 10 

Outputs and impact

  • Identification/Audit of information already available, signage, maps, local information.
  • Communications plan for the cycle highway
  • Production of communications materials. Materials could be:
    • Info about the cycle highway/greenway; maps, leaflets, website promotion
    • Communications at touch points.
    • Festival on the cycle highway
  • Increased awareness of cycle highway
  • Increased use of cycle highway

Examples of Interventions

Key messages will be that the cycle highway provides a route that is direct, safe and separate from traffic, and shows locations of the key entry and exit points in relation to employee’s journey.

  • Increasing knowledge/awareness of the cycle highway through Campaign 1 and Pedal Perk Reward Scheme, with local promotions, signs and way-marking
  • Increased knowledge of the cycle highway through workplace interventions; route planning with employees, led bike rides and walks, signage and maps in workplaces.
  • Using case studies to identify commuting routes using the cycle highway (see Campaign 8).
  • Publicity campaigns: press and web-based.
  • Improved infrastructure and signage to and from the cycle highway (see Campaign 9)

Plan of Action

Person dressed as large red heart carrying balloon that reads Love Air in middle of traffic Love Air campaign promoting cycle highway to commuters

Step 1: Scoping

  • Audit of information already available – maps, website etc.
  • Audit of signage in place, and identification of missing signage/areas to be developed.
  • Working with infrastructure package to report issues in workplaces and communitiesre. infrastructure including signage and links to and from greenway/cycle highway.
  • Survey of who knows about the greenway/cycle highway – included in the barrier survey, also through Twitter feedback and local feedback (see Campaign 1 retailers/services).
  • Link to readability work package (WP2) to identify new ways of promoting/raising awareness – where to put signs, touch-points and information.

Step 2: Develop communications

  • Develop communications plan, with clear deliverables and communication channels.
  • Establish best communication channels to be used. Could be:
    • Face to face through events and promotional activities, including cycle highway Festival
    • Website
    • Media
    • Social media
    • Through existing networks such as workplaces and retailers
  • Develop communication resources in response to gaps identified through scoping, and utilise communication channels. Could include:
    • Postcards
    • Posters
    • Maps
    • Signage
    • Website
    • Social media accounts and resources
    • Press releases
    • On the ground temporary signage to point the way to the greenway/cycle highway (e.g. sign saying two minutes to the Comber Greenway)

Step 3: Promotion

  • Use identified communication channels to deliver key messages, utilising complementary campaigns where possible.
  • Use workplaces as communication channel – internal communications, intranet, and newsletters.
  • Deliver events and promotional events as required


  • Record outputs from events, number of people engaged in activities
  • Survey showing awareness of the cycle highway
  • Increased use of cycle highway

Case studies

Love air campaign

Sustrans teamed up with local transport company Translink to thank bus and cycle commuters for not driving to work. Staff gave out chocolate hearts and red apples on Valentine’s Day at bus stops and along the main arterial road in east Belfast. This engagement activity saw staff provide information on cycling and where the Comber Greenway is. Promotional materials such as balloons and someone dressed up as a heart helped attract attention to the event. Read more.

Tilberg, Netherlands

A communication plan was developed for governments, the province and other related partners in the development of the cycle highway (such as the Efteling). The website is a tool to communicate. The designed map is also an output.

Besides campaign specific information and ‘evidence’ we have some other communication articles/pictures etc. 

Join the discussion