Recapturing Market Share Bypassing Competitors with Incubeta

We have a unique challenge as a business to compete with big name resellers who dominate the market with bigger budgets. Incubeta quickly identified the specific
audiences and localities where we could make the most out of our limited marketing budget and intelligently applied technology and expertise to gain a competitive advantage in those areas, driving phenomenal performance.
Kate Squires
Head of Marketing at East Midlands Trains


East Midlands Railway, formerly East Midland Trains, is a train operating company in England who needed a strategy to bypass main competitors, Trainline.

EMR realized that commuters were purchasing their onboard Wi-Fi, then going onto the Train Line website rather than theirs. They were losing valuable traffic despite offering everything that Trainline could.

Incubeta was tasked with driving online sales and recapturing market share from Trainline, whilst using their small budget in the most efficient way possible.


To combat the inefficiency of competitor bidding we created audience lists from the activity which we could re engage later on cheaper more generic ticketing and journey terms, that would make this campaign interesting.

We knew we couldn’t compete with Trainline country wide, so our competitor bidding strategy only targeted users within the postcodes that fall along East Midlands Railways’ network line.

Our campaigns dynamically inserted the users nearest train station into the ad copy. For instance, if a user near Sheffield was searching for “trains to London” the ad copy header would read “Sheffield trains to London.”

We also knew that East Midlands Railway made more money from their own network sales than a competitor like Northern Rail. So, it didn’t make sense to optimize just based on conversions. Our team of analysts developed a bespoke algorithm which automatically optimized campaigns based on the percent of profitable route sales,

not overall conversion.

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