- AAR.org RailxTech Landing Page: Gives a 101 introduction to the rail tech story.
- Politico: The Digitization of an Industrial Giant: Leading Class I technology experts show how technology is revolutionizing freight rail and moving the economy forward.
- AAR RailxTech White Paper: Provides a deep dive with facts and figures about how the rail industry uses technology to make the network safer and more efficient.
- RailxTech 360/VR Video: Gives viewers an up-close look at the types of technology freight rail uses — from Positive Train Control to fuel management systems. View on YouTube as a 360 video or place your phone into a VR headset for a virtual experience. Find a non-360/VR version here.
- Operational Regulations: Provides freight rail policy stance on operational regulations, including the need to invest in new technologies.
- Railway Supply Institute Website: Learn more about the only all-inclusive trade association for railway suppliers.
The AAR continually posts tech related content on its social channels. You can easily re-share our posts or modify the suggested posts below to tell the supplier side of the rail tech story and link to your own content or the content highlighted above.
- Technology fuels America’s #FreightRail, making a modern network capable of meeting today’s transportation challenges — and those of the future. #RailTech
- Drones. Ultrasound. Smart sensors. Technology makes #FreightRail safer and more efficient. #RailTech
- Trackside sensors monitor the health of 140,000 miles of track, which helped reduce mainline train accidents 32% since 2008. #RailTech
- Advanced locomotives get 470 MPG per ton, allowing #FreightRail to efficiently transport 1.6 billion tons each year (4x more efficient than trucks). #RailTech
- Smart logistics help railroads manage a fleet of 26,000 locomotives, allowing them to move 2x as much freight for the same price as 35 years ago. #RailTech
Railway Supply Institute Social Channels
- Twitter: @Railway_SupplyInstitute
- Facebook: @RailwaySupplyInstitute
- LinkedIn: Railway Supply Institute, Inc.
AAR Social Channels
- Twitter: @AAR_FreightRail
- Facebook: @FreightRail
- LinkedIn: The Association of American Railroads
- YouTube: FreightRailWorks
Why Write an Op-ed?
- Positions byliners as experts through unique content, unfiltered by a reporter or editor.
- Can frame a debate and have a lasting impact.
- Ideal for traditional and digital media outlets and can easily create an echo chamber on social media.
- Adherence to news values: impact, timeliness, prominence, proximity, uniqueness, conflict, currency.
- A clearly defined problem and solution. You have an opinion, solution, and argument to express. Have an opinion and state it forcefully.
- Correlating data, facts and statistics to back up your argument.
Questions to Ask Yourself
- What is the problem and solution? What is the main opinion or argument you hope to express, and what are the parallel points that support this?
- Does the byline matter? Is he/she an authentic voice for the message? How do they act as a problem solver?
- Are there correlating facts that can support the story and strengthen your case? What is the urgency? Who does this affect?
- How does it fit with the messages in the strategic communications plan?
- Make an outline, charting out the structure of the op-ed and then write the 3-5 main points as simple sentences, in active voice.
- Begin with something interesting – an attention grabber. Ensure that if this is not the “hook,” that it follows next to demonstrate its relevance to the readers and the community.
- Position the central point up top, within the first 2-3 paragraphs. Don’t bury the lead.
- Now back up your opinion with facts and supporting arguments. Use the inverted pyramid. Proof it – twice – and ask yourself:
- Is your topic focused? Adequately supported?
- Does each paragraph begin with a point?
- Have you used transition words to help the audience follow your logic?
- Is the language positive? Positive statements improve clarity.
- Do you have any throwaway words, or even full sentences?
- Is it less than 800 words?