Friends of Alaska Marine Highway System

If You’re Going to the Last Frontier, Isn’t it Good to Know the Ferry Gets You There?

In parts of the nation's largest state, the only way to get from one city to another is the Alaska Marine Highway System.

Hero Background Hero Ship
When you are in Alaska's biggest city, Anchorage, and want to go to Alaska's Capitol, Juneau, you cannot get there by car. There are places in Alaska without roads. The only way to travel, is by ferry. There isn't another way (except to fly a small plane). This means the Alaska Marine Highway System is Alaska's lifeline. And when budget cuts threatened its future, Tungsten worked on an advertising campaign to save the ferries.

The Alaska Marine Highway System has provided affordable transit for Alaska's people for decades. The public ferry is an essential part of Alaska's social fabric.

Ferries move cargo, groceries, entire households, local sports teams, medical supplies and patients – residents take the ferry for health care services in bigger cities. Ferry travel is statistically safer, environmentally friendly, and cost-effective for Alaskan families and businesses.

AMHS ferry named LeConte waits for passengers to board at ferry landing.
In areas where the roads end at the water, ferries connect cities and bring visitors to tourist towns along 3,500 miles of scenic coastline.

While locals say the ferry system is critical to commerce and infrastructure, Alaska's mounting budget deficit led to a proposal for a massive budget cut that could dramatically alter its services or lead to privatization. Imagine the disconcertion. These cuts would cripple the viability of these international waterways, and challenge Alaskans' ability to conduct their daily lives.

The Seal of the State of Alaska

Friends of Alaska Marine Highway System was formed in response to this threat. This broad and powerful coalition of citizens and organizations from across Alaska comprises municipalities, community organizations, labor groups and other interested parties who care deeply about affordable transportation for Alaskans.

The objective of Friends of Alaska Marine Highway System was to bring one voice to the Alaskan communities toward restoring full service and funding to the Alaska Marine Highway System.

Visual Identity Design
For the campaign to succeed, it was important for the brand to have a strong visual identity. A consistent logo, color palette, typography, and tone-of-voice are essential if a campaign is to appear authoritative, professional, and winnable. A strong visual identity amplifies the campaign’s voice and message. It gives the public greater confidence to sign a petition in support of the campaign, or make a donation.
Role of the website

The website served as a central hub for communicating with the Alaskan public, fundraising, disseminating information to the press, and mobilizing supporters. The website was the primary way of sharing updates, news, and information about events. Thousands of signatures were collected for an online petition. And thousands more Alaskans used an online form to email their representative.

Line drawing of a petition being signed
Host a petition
and online signature drive
Line drawing of hand putting coin into donation box
Collect donations
Line drawing of nodes of connected people
Circulate information
to Alaskans about the progress of the campaign
Satelite Photo - Alaska, blueshaded
Alaska Marine Highway System website designed by Tungsten Advertising agencyLaptop displaying Friends of Alaska Marine Highway System website designed by Tungsten Advertising agencyAlaska Marine Highway System website designed by Tungsten Advertising agency

After a one-and-a-half year campaign, the website had achieved its goal, and was retired.

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Le Conte
Inlandboatmen’s Union of the Pacific International Organization of Masters, Mates and Pilots Marine Engineers’ Beneficial Association
Close shot of two crew members navigating ferry at twilight.
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