Amtrak is advertising the second annual National Train Day, "the celebration of everything train." On May 9th, Amtrak will be offering train tours and lots more at events in Washington, D.C., Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, and dozens of other cities it serves.
Why May 9? The answer is in history: On May 10, 1869, the golden spike was driven into train tracks in Utah to complete America's first transcontinental railroad.
The marketing lesson: Trainiacs (as Amtrak calls train fans) can build a brand buzz faster than a speeding locomotive. Just for good measure, Amtrak points out all the earth-friendly reasons for taking a train, too. The National Train Day web site has the same retro graphics as the print ads (such as on back cover of April's Budget Travel). This being the era of social media, Amtrak has a Facebook page with 4,200 fans. It also has a Twitter account that seems to be dormant, at least as of today. All aboard!