Water Emergency Transportation Agency (WETA) Influencer Marketing Campaign
How D&A helped engage the Hispanic community
The San Francisco Bay Area Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA) is a regional public transit agency tasked with operating and expanding the San Francisco Bay ferry service and coordinating the water transit response to regional emergencies. WETA carries more than 3 million passengers annually, utilizing 15 high-speed passenger-only ferry vessel fleets. San Francisco Bay Ferry currently serves the cities of Alameda, Oakland, Richmond, San Francisco, South San Francisco, and Vallejo.
The Bay Area is home to a wide range of diverse ethnic communities. However, after conducting its 2022 Onrider Survey, WETA discovered the Hispanic community was underrepresented on the ferry’s rider profile. The agency saw these findings as an opportunity to connect authentically with this important ethnic community, including Spanish-speaking and bilingual audiences.
For WETA’s first targeted approach within the Hispanic community, D&A Communications (D&A) had a clear goal: raise awareness of the SF Bay Ferry services and benefits to increase ridership among Spanish-speaking and bilingual audiences. To achieve this goal, D&A combined personal storytelling with community outreach to authentically connect with this important demographic.
D&A created a tailored influencer marketing campaign, which was a first for WETA, to authentically connect with the Hispanic community. By leveraging the power of influencer endorsements and the importance of cultural relevance, D&A helped dispel the “not for me” perceptions about the SF Bay Ferry among the Hispanic community. The strategy established a strong cultural connection via in-language, authentic, and relatable messaging to foster a deeper engagement with the target audience. Each influencer received a personal promo code to share and incentivize followers to experience the SF Bay Ferry.
D&A drove positive outcomes for WETA through its long-standing community relationships and existing partnerships coupled with extensive research to identify influential individuals within the Hispanic community—and to support WETA’s goal of increasing ridership. The influencer’s content, concepts, and messaging was developed and refined in close collaboration between WETA, the influencers, and D&A to ensure authenticity.
The community engagement was extremely positive, confirming that the content was perceived as credible and relatable. Many followers expressed their love for the ferry, by sharing their personal memories and voicing their desire to ride the ferry.
“Working with D&A on WETA’s first ever influencer campaign for the SF Bay Ferry targeted towards the Hispanic community has been an exceptional experience.”
—Thomas Hall, Public Information and Marketing Manager at WETA