Agency: Burson Cohn & Wolfe (Genesis Burson-Marsteller)
Brand: Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation
With 7.5 million riders daily, Mumbai's railway system is the world's most overcrowded public transport system. To ease the burden on existing tracks, Mumbai Metro Rail Corporation Limited (MMRCL) decided to create another railway line called the Mumbai Metro Line 3. An infrastructure project of this magnitude was bound to create conversations since it involved acquiring large pieces of land, displacing people, noise and traffic pollution, and interference with the environment.
A group of social activists and environmentalists approached the Bombay High Court to demand stalling of the project since it involved the felling of trees and succeeded in securing a stay order. Realising that they had allowed other people to control the narrative around the metro line, MMRCL launched an integrated communication campaign – "Mumbai Life Line 3 – Connecting the Unconnected".
Using public relations, advertising, digital and community engagement programmes, MMRCL reached out to more than 5 million citizens of Mumbai who were directly or indirectly impacted by the project and initiated a 2-way dialogue with them. All it required was finding a balance between sentiments and rationale, collaboration over agitation, and pragmatism over disbelief. By bringing facts to life through deeper engagement with influencers and education, MMRCL managed to shift the negative perception. Eventually the Bombay High Court revoked its stay order and allowed the project to proceed.