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Airline Marketing Monthly


March / April

76 2019

S7 Airlines Visit Earth Big Data, taking airlines places - with FlightPath3D

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Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Published by SimpliVisible, the content arm of SimpliFlying, Airline Marketing Monthly is the only trade magazine worldwide devoted to aviation marketing

Content Introduction Cover-story S7 Airlines - Visit Earth



Aviation Campaigns


WestJet Safety Video


The Air Asia Restaurant


British Airways Retro


Liveries Featured campaigns




JetBlue -


Plaza Premium Lounges - 65 Your Airport Moment

Etihad Holiday Machine


Southwest Storytellers

How airlines marked


Canadian Airports Council 67

international women’s day

Travelport - Travel Unified 64


- Wonder takes flight Scoot - MARVIE Chatbot


Jewel Changi Airport



The SimpliFlying Global


Big Data, taking airlines 36-58 places - with

Aviation brands in this

Aviation brands at SXSW


London City and Dubai


International Airport





Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Alaska Airlines - Fly smart, 16-17 land happy



Etihad Special Olympics

Introduction How many people really follow the news? If a giant Microsoft study conducted proportion of so-called ‘active news customers’ could be as low as 4%. Or 14% if you are more generous. That Microsoft study is noteworthy for two reasons. First of all, researchers tracked what participants actually read, as opposed to what they said they read. Then, the sample size was significant - 1.2 million Internet users. True, the study was carried out in the US, but I believe the results apply to other Western countries as well. The researchers concluded that being into news is actually a hobby much like any other. It’s a bit like being a NASCAR fan. Or indeed an AV Geek. Some people are really into it. Most not so much. So the 86% (or 96%) who are not actively tuned in, really only pick up snippets here and there. The odd headline on the radio while driving to work, the first 30 secs of the TV news before switching over, a glance of a story at Facebook, a few tweets. Only the most top-line stuff


As a result, few stories really break through to mass consciousness. One that did however was Boeing and the (at time of writing) grounding of the 737-MAX. Within the space of a few days of the tragic Ethiopian Airlines crash, one news media outlet after the other picked it up, while a series of tweets by US President Donald Trump served as the tipping point to just about everyone knowing about it. Going back to our point about the interest in news being a minority pursuit, few people will have understood the ins and outs of the issue. Rather, much of the general public will probably simply have thought that there is something “wrong” with the plane. Indeed, I imagine many don’t even understand the difference between the MAX and the other variations of the 737. Speaking from a communications, and not regulatory, point of view

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

a few years ago is to be believed, the

is ever absorbed, and little detail.

zine is of course aviation marketing, and

alternative to grounding the aircraft.

our cover campaign goes to S7 Airlines,

It also means that Boeing and operating airlines would be wise to make sure that steps to put things right, such as the proposed software update, are

which once again has come up with something really different. “Visit Earth” was a travel show for aliens, which was beamed into space.

heard about as widely and as clearly as

The campaign is a joy to watch, it’s

possible, and that a confidence building

unique as far as airline campaigns go,

campaign takes place.

and the results so far speak for them-

The whole raison d’etre of this maga-


This month, we are pleased to be working with FlightPath3D, the airline industry’s number one map provider. Our industry guide, looks at a number of different trends shaping passenger needs and the IFE Industry, while also including a white-paper from FlightPath3D President Duncan Jackson.


As always, we’d love to hear about your campaigns. Tell me about them by sending me an email Dirk Singer Editor

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

that means there was really no


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

S7 - Visit Earth

S7 - Visit Earth At the end of last year we started seeing short YouTube videos from Russian airline S7, that seemed to take the form of some kind of bizarre reality TV show. We asked one of our Russian speaking colleagues what it was all about, and she told us that the airline had created a


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

travel guide to earth for aliens.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

This travel guide - Visit Earth - has now been translated into English for audiences outside Russia. Forming a six episode online video series that has also been beamed into space, it’s our cover story for the month.


S7 - A track record of doing things differently

The airline has been on our covers on a number of occasions, for example with the “best planet” campaign where Cosmonaut Andrei Borisenko told us that

shot ad where kids talked about magical places they’d love to go, after which S7 showed that these destinations exist right here on earth.

the most amazing experiences can be

Then of course, there was the collabora-

found right here on Earth, and with “I

tion with OK Go, where the music video

am you”, which encouraged people to

for “Upside down and Inside Out” was

leave behind the fake experiences of the

filmed in zero gravity on an S7 aircraft.

digital world and see the real world for

That particular activity saw the airline


win a Gold Lion at the annual Cannes

Other S7 campaigns worth noting are


an EEG headset), as well as a beautifully

Advertising Awards.

the 2015 Imagination Machine, which

Finally, as a Russian airline, S7 of course

was both an experiential stunt where

created marketing activity around the

participants could “fly” a virtual plane

2018 World Cup. In particular, a rather

to a destination using their minds (via

manic video shows a stunt where a set

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

This isn’t the first time we’ve featured S7.

of goal posts were painted on a luggage

no means a ‘big’ airline, but in market-

carousel at Moscow’s Domodedovo Air-

ing terms it consistently comes out with

port. If your bag “hit” the goal you won a

campaigns and ideas that are stand-out

prize (flights).

unique. Though it incorporates ideas

The point is, with less than 100 aircraft (including no wide body jets), S7 is by

from previous S7 campaigns, the alien travel guide, “Visit Earth” is no different.

Visit Earth - Six episodes for “aliens” Working with Mackenzie Sheppard, W&K

the Best Planet and the Imagination

travelled to Spain, Thailand, Italy, Japan

Engine, ‘Visit Earth’ was created by W&K

and of course Russia (Sochi and St. Pe-


tersburg), to shoot the six episodes.

W&K Amsterdam brought on Canadian

As part of this they looked to unearth

director, Mackenzie Sheppard, winner

quirky stories like Italian cheese bowl-

of the Young Director’s Award Prize, at

ers and Icelandic nudists to capture the

the 2016 Cannes Film Festival, for the six

imagination of aliens. This real-life travel

episodes of Visit Earth. Meanwhile the

footage was then merged with “com-

series was narrated in Russian by Dmitry

mercial breaks” explaining basic Earth

Syenduk, known to Russian TV viewers

concepts such as gravity, air and food

as the voice of the cartoon series “Rick &

made of dough.

Monty.” These six episodes cover nature, food,

campaign harks back to much of the

love, parties, sport and art. They are

thinking behind the Best Planet and I

intended to give alien viewers a taste of

am You - namely that there are so many

the best things our planet has to offer,

amazing things to discover, yet we’ve

with the idea being that after watching

switched off and often forget they are

the different episodes, our extraterres-

here waiting to be seen, heard, felt and

trial friends will set off to see Earth for




According to S7, the thinking behind the

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

As with previous S7 campaigns such as

Eleonora Romanova, Deputy General Director for Marketing and PR S7 Group said:


The mission of the S7 Airlines brand is to inspire people to travel. We always set ourselves the task of finding the most vivid and relevant ideas and implement them.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Quoted on Russian news website Sostav,

However, Eleonora Romanova pointed out that consumer habits have been changing from less live TV, to more on demand and online video consumption. As a result, the airline and ad agency decided to create a six part online video show that is a mixture of comedy and documentary: “Sometimes it is useful to change your point of view. The main idea is to remind you that our planet is the best place to travel in the Universe, which we often forget about in our everyday fuss�

In the same spirit, Evgeny Primachenko, W+K Amcommented:

Earth is awesome. It has ice cream, waterfalls, mountains, beaches, cute puppies and seven-string guitars, parties and so much more. But sometimes we can take our planet for granted. Creating Visit Earth was a great opportunity to not only produce content that would achieve S7’s brief to raise brand awareness, but also to make something that reminds all of us how lucky we are to live here and have the privilege to call ourselves earthlings.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

sterdam Creative Director,

Branded content can often fall flat but this really works For example, the first episode, around ‘na-

hit and miss affair. Often commercial and

ture’ starts with aliens being introduced to

sales messages are shoehorned into the

humans (blurred out naked figures scurry-

videos in a not too subtle way. At other

ing around a hill), before the aliens are told

times, brands suffer from “Dad on the

what a rock is - with the rock speaking and

dancefloor” syndrome - they try to be cool,

giving an explanation, after which one of

when clearly they are not.

the naked humans throws the rock in the

In contrast, ‘Visit Earth’ is funny and it keeps you hooked.

sea (cue a narration all about water and then air).

The episode also features the first commercial break - “air by trees”, which is shot like an aftershave ad.

The campaign is underpinned by a micro-site or ‘online hub.’ Though the international, English language campaign has just launched, W&K Amsterdam says that the Russian site has seen over 35 million visits


over the past few months. . There, visitors could watch all six episodes, as well as create their ‘travel guides’ for aliens, in exchange for a chance to win flights.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Branded content can at times be a bit of a

Finally, to make sure aliens actually see it and

Apparently, the signal is expected to reach

come and visit, the show has been beamed

the exoplanet Gliese 581c in 20 years - set

into space with a RT 7.5 radio telescope and a

your watches to 2039.

specially developed transmitter.

A campaign that’s uniquely S7

and the airline and agency deserve to once again win awards for it. First of all it’s unique, and it took guts to create something like this. Can you imagine many other airlines rolling this out, and it getting past the board in this exact form? In a space where so many campaigns are interchangeable (swap the airline logo around and you don’t notice a difference), this is distinctively S7. The messaging is also consistent with previ-


ous campaigns such as The

Best Planet. Branding is subtle to the point of being almost non existent - the content is allowed to work. The only hint of a commercial message is a list of destinations at the end of every video with the heading “this is where aliens can enjoy food”, “this is where aliens can enjoy sport”, and so on. The wealth of content and funny little clips means there are so many things

notes explanation, Mackenzie Sheppard says that the “things in dough” clip went viral in its own right in Russia. Then there is an element of audience participation (letting Russian viewers submit their own travel guides), and finally beaming the episodes into space makes for a final nice creative twist. Well done S7 Airlines on once again being featured on our cover.

to see, comment on and

(Campaign images, courtesy

share. Indeed in a director’s

of W&K Amsterdam)

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

This is a fantastic campaign,


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Featured campaigns

Alaska Airlines - Fly smart, land happy

quite a lot across. “Fly smart, land happy” is the title of a new campaign developed by Seattle ad-agency Mekanism. Four different spots each show people in everyday situations where what they get falls far below what they hoped for. In ‘Cycle-ish’, a trainer get distracted by looking at her phone while running a Spin class. ‘The dinner’ has a group of guests being offered tiny nouvelle cuisine style portions by a waiter, ‘Wahoo’ shows a young girl on a fairground style electric horse, which stops after five seconds, while in ‘Hired’ a new employee is asked which perk she would like - a desk chair, weekends off, or the bathroom door code - but she can only choose one. According to Natalie Bowman, the airline’s managing director of marketing and advertising, “the campaign challenges flyers to ask for more out of their flying experience and positions Alaska to deliver unparalleled value to its customers.”


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Alaska Airlines’ new ads might be short, at 15 seconds each, but they manage to get

With ad agency creatives still being overwhelmingly male, Campaign magazine says that agency Mekanism used a mainly female team to direct and produce the spots. This comes as Mekanism is supporting ‘Free the bid’, an initiative advocating on

global advertising industry. Mekanism points out that its support for ‘Free the bid’ ties in well with Alaska Airlines’ support for ‘Sisters of the Sky’, which promotes industry opportunities for women of colour. Alaska Airlines is in fact the only US airline – and the first West Coast Fortune 500 company – to achieve gender parity among independent board directors.

‘The best of Alaska and the best of Virgin America’ The Fly Smart, Land Happy Campaign coincides with Alaska Airlines unveiling its retrofitted Airbus jets, which according to company President Ben Minicucci, fulfils the promise that the company made when it absorbed the Virgin America brand of bringing together “the best of Alaska and the best of Virgin America.” The retrofit features ‘calming colours’, new seats, an upgraded first class and a “multitasker’s seatback”, which features a custom tablet holder at eye level that can adjust to fit most mobile devices.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

behalf of women directors for equal opportunities to bid on commercial jobs in the


- JetBlue

in exchange for a year’s worth of free flights? If yes, then the competition JetBlue ran until March 8th will have been for you. In the “All you can” competition, entrants were asked to delete their existing Instagram posts (or archive them), and add a single JetBlue image instead. The idea was that with a blank slate, you could add new memories from all those JetBlue flights you’d be taking over the coming year. Needless to say, deleting all your photos didn’t mean you automatically won. JetBlue chose three winners among all the people who entered. As a competition mechanic, it is certainly different - to the point of being bizzarre. But judging from the comments on JetBlue’s Instagram post announcing the competition, plenty of people removed their selfies, holiday snaps, and pictures of their favourite food for a chance to win flights. In fact, 14,000+ people used the competition hashtag.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Do you love your Instagram account? Do you love it enough to delete everything in it,

Though that doesn’t mean 14,000 entered, it still means the tactic got an awful lot of pick-up on social media. And on mainstream media as well, where the promotion got JetBlue acres of coverage. Just some examples are Techcrunch, The Verge, Fortune, CNET and London’s Evening Standard. Most of the coverage focused on the rather unique nature of the competition and then asked pretty much the same question, why does JetBlue want you to commit to this act of social media cleansing?

In a statement given to Business Insider, JetBlue said:

JetBlue’s All You Can Jet pass is the ultimate way for people to do more of the things they love as much as they’d like to. “This year, we’re thrilled to bring back the coveted, unlimited travel pass with a twist: a social sweepstakes asking people to create a blank slate for the opportunity to live the jetsetter lifestyle, making memories and pursuing their passions in more than 100 JetBlue destinations for a full year!” Many have pointed out that JetBlue asking people to delete their posts and replace it with a JetBlue branded image, isn’t a million miles away from the now infamous Fyre Festival, where guests were asked to change their profile pictures to an orange square.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

As CNN’s AJ Willingham put it - “The idea seems to pit two complementary forces against each other: The desire for unfettered world travel, and the desire to obsessively document it in all its filtered, color-saturated glory.”

Etihad Holiday Machine In the past we’ve been lukewarm about

The new Etihad Holidays website, which

on-street activations and ‘stunts.’

the Holiday Machine stunt was meant

Some are big and bold enough to get extensive media coverage worldwide (see for example Delta’s Summer wall murals, or the silent disco in the air), but

gorithm’, which claims to offer the best packages and the best prices, guaranteed. The whole activity was promoted via an

created it, more than they do the client.

online video, which follows pretty much

but you wonder about the return on investment, given that these activations

the same basic script and format for ad / PR-agency created stunts of this nature:

are generally quite expensive yet the

The short 90 second film starts with the

reach (the number of people seeing it

character (the Steampunk clad host)

on the day) is actually quite limited.

showing off the machine.

With that in mind, we’ll turn to the lat-

The camera then pans to surprised

est piece of on-street activity, or rather

members of the public stopping to take

in-station activity, in this case, Etihad’s

photos and videos with their smart-

“Holiday Machine, where we’ve also

phones, before showing prize winners

invited a number of industry experts to

jumping for joy at getting a free holiday.

tell us what they thought.

Was it worth it? According to the Eve-

To launch the new Etihad Holidays web-

ning Standard, around 100,000 people

site, agency MullenLowe Open, created

use London’s Paddington Station ev-

a steampunk style machine at London’s

ery day, and the activation lasted two

Paddington Station (the departure

days. The Facebook video promoting

point for Heathrow Express trains) for

the stunt also received 800k+ views (we

two days - January 22nd and 23rd.

assume this was promoted / boosted).

Every person who came to interact with

Finally, MullenLowe Open could point

the ‘Holiday Machine’ and the Steam-

to the fact that this stunt was part of

punk clad figure operating it, received

a larger campaign taking place this

some sort of prize, ranging from money

quarter, including digital, press, social,

off vouchers to a free holiday in Abu

content, CRM, sponsorship events, and



Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

others seem to benefit the agency that

It looks good on an agency showreel,


to promote, is powered by a ‘smart al-

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019


Hit or miss? We asked a few creative industry experts their opinion: My first impression of the video was “the same ingredients as usual: a lucky person will win a big prize through a crazy machine.” But I was quite surprised by the details and I wonder whether Etihad may have nailed it - while perhaps forgetting a little bit of engagement.

Social Media Specialist,

The scenario Etihad created was different: a railway

including seven years

station in London. A smart choice!

with Azul. It had a flashy design and an entertaining showman, performing his role well. Even the background soundtrack got you in the holiday mood. But engagement is about much more than aesthetics, that look good on camera. How can you support engagement among those watching the film, but who can’t press the button. I want to press the button and win the prize too! Which comes back to engagement. With the constant growth of instant content, such as Instagram Stories, Snapchat or even live streaming, these features could support this kind of campaign. As a result, there is definitely more scope for improvement. The video has performed well with almost a million views on Facebook, and is Etihad’s most viewed YouTube video for the past six months. Etihad can (and I am confident will) improve the online element even more to make it more engaging for people who interact with it.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Bruna Didiaro Bruna Didario

I think we hit ‘peak’ Steampunk about six years ago, so was a little bemused hearing about this. But, I was intrigued to see just how they’d combine the imagery of this very corporate, Abu Dhabi-based, airline with what resembles a wild, sci-fi re-imagining of Martin Ballantine

Victorian times. I actually got quite excited.

Managing director, Piracy

However, my hopes were dampened upon reading an


article about it.

Lifted wholesale from a press release and packed with corporate hyperbole, it carcost-effective solutions when booking packages for their holidays”. Then came a client quote - adding another three more unnecessary brand mentions - rashly hyping the promotion as “…the embodiment of the ideals we strive to achieve…”. Quite a claim. So, did the activity live up to the hype? Not really. From watching a video, the best thing was the Steampunk host – he really looked the part and had the dramatic flair that you want from actors on these occasions. I also thought that the ‘time machine’ looked great. But, I suspect that slick-editing made the promotion look a lot better than its reality – randomly stuck on a cold train station platform for two days, with thousands of disinterested commuters rushing by. It was also jarring to see cabin crew in contemporary garb alongside him. Why not go the extra yard and create complementary Steampunk-style outfits for them? Also, there’s some very half-hearted visual ‘synergy’ on the website. I think this is because many big corporates are incapable of seeing less-than-usual concepts all the way through. They usually end up diluting agency bravery and end up going off half-cocked, which looks what happened here. Maybe more crucially, there was also an erroneous belief that an algorithm *actually* merited a random experiential execution. So, sorry - in both hype and execution - this was a lot more steam than punk.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

ried the obvious-as insight that: “We know that customers are looking for clear and

How airlines marked International Women’s Day A number of airlines marked International Women’s

Stories of “WOW Women” Icelandic LCC WOW Air

Icelandic LCC WOW Air, invited passengers to share stories of “WOW Women” - the most important women in their lives - on social media. The most inspiring stories were re-posted on the WOW Air website on March 8th, and included 19-year old Maria from Montreal who has fought off stage four cancer, and Donna from the USA, who has been a caretaker since being a young girl in a household with eight children, and has volunteered in a Haiti care home.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Day on March 8th, here are a few examples:

WOW Air points out that women make up 54% of all staff, including 33% of managers. Though the share of female WOW Air pilots is still low at 7% of the total, that is higher than the share in both the US and UK, where it is at around 4-5%.

More than 30 Etihad Airways women

en in roles including pilots and cabin crew,

showcased their aviation skills and exper-

engineers, technicians, a technical safety

tise during Etihad’s first ever all-female

manager, a flight dispatcher and a load

flight from Abu Dhabi to London..


French Captain Sophie Blanchard and

Travellers to Abu Dhabi International Air-

Irish Captain Faela Stevenson piloted the

port were able to see artwork featuring

Airbus A380 along with First Officers Pirre

four of Etihad’s women as they journeyed

Susana Leese from Finland and Liesbeth

through the airport.

Baldewijns from Belgium. The flight deck worked hand in hand with the 19-member all-female Cabin Crew team from 13 nationalities, on the flight of 368 guests. The operation also brought together wom-


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Etihad’s first ever all-female flight from Abu Dhabi to London

Other airlines which flew aircraft staffed by an all-female crew included the Lufthansa Group (Lufthansa, SWISS, Austrian Airlines, and Brussels Airlines), and Thomas Cook Airlines. Credit - Image from Delta

‘Tail Fin Heroes’ by Norwegian

gian aircraft, to create 10 British Female

the portraits of eight renowned British

Tail Fin Heroes.

women will adorn the airline’s tail fins - Photo by Noam Galai/ andCredit become ‘Tail Fin Heroes’. Getty Images for Delta

The eight additional women include mathematician Ada Lovelace, writer

They will join Amy Johnson and Jane

Charlotte Brontë, and medical pioneer

Austen, who already feature on Norwe-

Florence Nightingale.

Virgin Atlantic

What’s the only country in the world to be named after a woman? Virgin Atlantic and Virgin Holidays say it’s the island of St Lucia, named after Saint Lucie.

As a result, anyone lucky enough be blessed with the first name “Lucy” or “Lucia” on their passport was given the

Virgin Holidays carried out research

chance to fly to St Lucia, by entering the

showing that two thirds of British women

special competition website.

struggle to take holidays, due to the pres-


sures of balancing work and family life.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Meanwhile, Norwegian announced that

Finally, British Airways marked interna-

They listened to talks from British Air-

tional women’s day by welcoming 100

ways’ female pilots and trainees who

young women to its Global Learning

shared tips on how to break into the

Academy to inspire more girls to be-

industry, advised which subjects they

come commercial airline pilots.

should be paying close attention to at

Girls aged between 14 and 18 from 30 different schools across the South East were invited to visit British Airways’

required as well as the excitement that comes with flying around the world.

state-of-the-art training centre to meet

However it’s worth noting that the coun-

some of the airline’s female pilots and

try with the highest number of female

experience flying an aircraft in one of

pilots as a proportion isn’t Iceland, or

British Airways’ flight simulators.

the US or the UK - it is India. While the

As well as this the 100 youngsters toured the airline’s training facilities and one of its long-haul aircraft and learnt how crew deal with challenging issues during a flight.


school and explained the dedication

proportion worldwide is still a pitiful 5%, India is a leader in female aviation equality with 13% of the country’s pilots being women.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

British Airways inspires more girls to become commercial airline pilots.

SXSW round-up

at ITB in Berlin, we went to SXSW in Austin. Though not as many as in previous years, a number of aviation brands did have a presence. This included:

Embraer The Brazilian aircraft manufacturer had a heavy-weight presence around the theme of the future of urban mobility. In particular, Embraer used the conference to highlight its partnership with Uber, namely with the Uber Elevate, or Flying Taxi, programme. This included showing off a prototype (by way of images), letting users see the experience of an Embraer


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

While most airlines, and most aviation journalists were

‘flying taxi’ fly overhead via a VR headset, and having a space in one of the conference venues where users could build their own flying taxi out of lego bricks.

Embraer also sponsored a number of conference sessions, and the Embraer brand was prominent at the event. Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019



This featured both a Scandinavian pop-up restaurant, and a rolling schedule of talks from Scandinavian speakers around the main conference themes of technology and marketing. As in previous years, Scandinavian Airlines was behind the House of Scandinavia. This featured both a Scandinavian pop-up restaurant, and a rolling schedule of talks from Scandinavian speakers around the main conference themes of technology and marketing. Like Embraer, SAS had a serious, visible and high budget presence with the Crown Princess of Denmark being in attendance to spearhead an official Danish initiative focusing on Danish and Scandinavian values and strengths With Austin being a major US tech and startup centre, not just at SXSW, one entrepreneur wants to make the House of Scandinavia a permanent feature.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

As in previous years, Scandinavian Airlines was behind the House of Scandinavia.

Ray Sosa, the CEO of fintech company Rev, which worked with SAS on the Eurobonus travel wallet last year. Sosa feels that the US could, “do with some Scandinavian transparency and pragmatism. At the same time, maybe Scandinavians need a bit of that feeling that it’s ok to fail. We can even envisage the idea of having a permanent House of Scandinavia here in Austin to really build a bridge – SAS isn’t just an airline, it’s a company that transports ideas and dreams –

It is worth mentioning that SAS does not actually fly to Austin. Right now the only European airlines that do are British Airways, Norwegian and (from this Spring) Lufthansa. SAS did however have an SXSW flight from CPH, which the airline called a “one-of-a-kind direct flight”, where guests could “explore the latest in digitalized traveling at a special event in Copenhagen Airport.

Lufthansa Like SAS, Lufthansa had a special flight from FRA to AUS. Or to be more precise, the airline ran one of its “Flying Lab” flights. The best way to describe the Flying Lab is of a TED talk in the air. Lufthansa runs a number of these a year to major trade shows and events, and the idea is you fly direct to the destination - and you are able to follow a series of speakers who give talks during the ten hour journey.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

We’d like our partnership with SAS to empower entrepreneurs to discover the world.

United United didn’t have the highest budget presence, far from it, actually what they ended up doing must have cost them very little. United targeted journalists on their way out of Austin, to show off the new United app in a pop up lounge, within the actual United lounge at AUS. That doesn’t sound particularly creative, but we found it effective. For one thing United was the only brand we could see trying to get media on their way out of Austin, rather than join the bun fight in town.

fly business, most don’t, and in exchange for a 15 min demo of the app, media got lounge access. Features in the new app include ‘dynamic’ boarding passes which update automat-ically (e.g. if the departure time shifts), and a ‘my trips’ page with prepopulated boarding passes where you don’t have to be a United frequent flier (or log in every time) to access it. As well as updated home screens, with more engaging content, the home screen is also more personalized to each user; for example, customers who recently passed loyalty milestones will be recognized on the home screen, and the app will also celebrate customers on their birthday.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Secondly, it’s not a given that journalists

SXSW - Should you have a presence? As the world’s biggest combined interactive, film and music event, SXSW drew in 75,000 conference attendees last year, with 25% being from outside the US. As an airline, should you have a presence? Depending on what you have in mind of course, we’d say (as 7x conference veterans), yes. Those 75,000 people have an above average income, are more likely to travel, and much as the phrase is overused, really are early adopters, open to new ideas.

In 2018 were also over 4000 media in attendance (the definition of media of course includes bloggers, niche trade publications such as this one, as well as A-List titles). That means over 5% of the audience are media. SXSW isn’t cheap, but if you do have the budget, doing something like SAS did is worthwhile. Or, you can spend less, be smart and do what United did and catch people in a setting no other brand was able to. It’s worth saying that United told us that they have been doing the same thing at other influencer-rich conferences, such as CES in Las Vegas.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

They are also more likely to be on social media, be ‘influencers’ (another overused word), and to share what they see and find - and talk about it afterwards.

London City and Dubai International Airport Rebrands Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Two airports have undertaken a

Royal Docks and close to the Thames.

rebrand in recent months, London City

Meanwhile the green represents

and Dubai International.

London’s parks and green spaces.

Launched earlier this month, London

The airport claims that the use of bright

City, the London airport actually with a

colours confirms a real departure

London postcode, unveiled a new look

from the conservative grey and blue

with a heart motif, “which reflects a more

combination, which the new brand

dynamic, vibrant and contemporary look,


synonymous with modern London.” The new identity comes during a


The blue in the new logo represents

£500 million four-year development

London City being by the water, in


which last month unveiled a new brand, DXB, where the primary colours are yellow and blue. The brand comes as the world’s largest international airport announced new customer experience, retail and restaurant enhancements. To launch the new brand, DXB partnered with extreme sports organisation XDubai, to deliver a record-breaking stunt by Emirati extreme athlete Mohammed Baker. This saw the world’s longest free fall attempt that began with a jump out of a helicopter and a glide through the Dubai sky, followed by a swoop under Sheikh Zayed Road bridge. The event also saw a live installation by UAE calligrapher and art performer, Diaa Allam, among other creative expressions, aimed at linking the essence of old Dubai with the city as it is today. According to Dubai Airports’ operators, this rebrand signifies DXB’s transition “from airport operator to a consumer-led company, committed to making the world’s busiest international airport, the world’s best.”


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Another airport leaving “conservative grey and blue” behind is Dubai International,


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Big Data, taking airlines places

At the recent APEX Asia Conference in

First of all, there is the growth in experi-

Shanghai, FlightPath3D Vice President

ential travel.

of Marketing Jon Norris, gave a presentation, which also forms the title of this

This comes as the world’s leading visual

supplement - “big data, taking airlines’

social network Instagram, has passed


one billion users, and posts on the social network now influence many decisions

In it, Jon Norris outlined three big trends

on where to go (leading easyJet for

shaping passenger needs (and the IFE

example to introduce “Look and Book”


functionality in its app, where you can


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Big Data, taking airlines places

captive audience, that spends a lot of

one’s post).

time thinking about their destination passengers in-flight.

Secondly, big data and AI is driving personalisation. The amount of data now

And how can airlines and destination

existing in the average consumer’s social

marketers do so? Via the most con-

and digital footprint, leads to more per-

sumed piece of content in-flight, the

sonal targeting based on his or her actual

interactive map, which FlightPath3D calls

interests (as opposed to guesswork).


And finally, there is the growth in an-

We’ve partnered with FlightPath3D to

cillary revenue, from $2.5 billion to $67

examine some of these trends in greater

billion in a decade.

detail in our third special industry report of 2019, this includes a white paper by the

Together these three trends lead to op-

company’s President Duncan Jackson.

portunity. In particular, the opportunity

Want to find out even more? Contact

to sell highly relevant experiences to a

FlightPath3D at


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

book the destination you see in some-

Big Data, taking airlines places By Duncan Jackson, President of FlightPath3D

Part 1 - Trends Shaping IFE Industry Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

A staggering 90% of the world’s data was created in the last 2 years. 39.

Big data has tremendous potential to

• Generate ticket sales and ancillary reve-

enhance the passenger experience and is


one of the most important trends driving the evolution of air travel today. There are literally billions of experiences being consumed each year driving demand for air travel. Instagram, for example, has 100 million new photos every single day. If leveraged properly it has the power to:

There are three big trends shaping passenger needs and the Inflight Entertainment (IFE) Industry today, these include: • The growth in experiential travel • Big data and AI driving personalization • The growth in ancillary revenue There is an opportunity to create a par-

• Create a personalized inflight service by

using data that can dynamically re-orga-

harnessing billions of social experiences

nize IFE content to create more targeted

• Predict demand for specific flights by

products and travel suggestions for pas-

learning passenger desires


Google and Facebook dynamically prioritize and rank content based on user interest Why aren’t IFE systems organizing videos, music and destination data this way? There are literally billions of experiences being consumed each year driving demand for air travel. Instagram, for example, has 100 million new photos every single day. Airlines that leverage this rise in available data can create a competi-tive advantage that will leave other airlines behind.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

adigm shift in the inflight experience

Let’s briefly look at the three big trends. 1. The growth in experiential travel The desire for bigger and better experiences has created a growing demand for cultural exploration and activity-based travel. Online photos, videos, and stories are one of the biggest inspirations for traveler travel to a more personalized experience. Anyone can now discover where friends and influencers have visited, how they traveled, and the moments they enjoyed.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

wish lists and air travel. Social media has accelerated the shift from traditional mass

Travelers are Craving Local Authentic Experiences People are seeking off-the-beaten-path adventures that are authentic, unforgettable and Instagram-worthy. Whether your passion is to explore cathedrals in Croatia, taste pastries in

Many people haven’t had time to plan these smaller activities, which creates a huge opportunity for airlines to service the consumer who is motivated to do last minute research for a bite-sized travel snack. Immersive Augmented Reality The experiential traveler is seeking to

are showing an enormous appetite to

be immersed in the journey from the

explore and get hyper-local. Passengers

moment they leave their home. In-flight

want to explore places with social and

they are seeking deeper engagement

contextual information and to capture a

with the flying experience more than

more meaningful personal experience.

simply watching movies to pass the

Snacking on Bite-Sized Travel


Experiences Business travelers and tourists are both looking to pack travel itineraries into shorter time-frames. With a rise in weekend getaways and business travelers looking to add some interest to their trip - many travelers are looking to slot in a

3D augmented reality (AR) experiences

few unplanned activities, asking them-

such as virtual cockpit or augmented

selves; “What’s the most popular thing

camera view are some of the most pop-

to do near my hotel?” or “Where can I go

ular selected experiences inflight with

for a run in the morning?”

an astonishing 60%+ open rate on some seatback IFE systems.

The new experiential traveler wants: • To explore socially evaluated places • Take part in the local culture and memorialize it online • Wants an immersive experience from the moment they start their journey


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Paris, or nature in Norway, passengers

2. Big Data and artificial intelligence Intelligent IFE

Airlines rely heavily on delivering excel-

Big data has been described as a cultural movement helping us discover how consumers interact with the world. We can now harness the patterns in billions of online experiences and enhance how your passengers interact with the and community-based desires amongst travelers with similar tastes.

utation and AI technology can be used to improve and tailor recommendations and guarantee fast response times, even in the absence of staff. Dynamically re-organizing data inflight to create more targeted products and travel suggestions. For example, passengers can explore “individualized points of interest� that have been compiled

People already have smart homes with AI agents everywhere from thermostats

based on themes and geospatial queries and make a suggestion like:

to door locks to Alexa, Google Home, and Siri. Intelligent IFE will help passengers plan their next trip, recommend destinations, search flights, and airport transfer options. The Personal Touch Making the passenger feel understood has always been a core component of business class.

get active in the outdoors when you land for the athletic type, or

check out these iconic local landmarks for the history buff


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

IFE. We can understand both individual

lent customer service to build their rep-

3. Ancillary Revenue growth Ancillary Revenue at $92.9 Billion in 2018 According to CarTrawler and IdeaWorks - company ancillary revenue is generated by activities and services that yield cashflow for airlines beyond the simple transportation of customers from A to B. These activities provide more options for consumers and more profit for airlines.

• In-Aircraft Services such as checked baggage, food and beverage sales and seat related like extra leg room • Off-Aircraft Services relating to commissions from travel retail like hotel bookings or car rentals


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

The key components of this revenue fall into two broad buckets:

of the connected aircraft. Ground-based travel services purchased inflight will continue to fuel the growth in ancillary aircraft revenue. The question is what information and travel services will passengers desire most. The New Connected Airline Economy We’ve seen that ancillary airline revenue is currently pegged at $92.9Bn per year and growing rapidly. This growth was independent of broad-based inflight internet access. There’s a new connected airline economy around the corner that will unlock ancillary revenue growth powered by over 2 billion smartphones and billions more smart devices. Inflight IFE and these devices will enable access to $330Bn of sharing economy services and over $500Bn of indestination spend.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

The off-aircraft revenue has the potential to dwarf on-board services with the arrival

Part Two - Top Four Big Data Tips 1. Socially Rank IFE Content Internet Content is Socially Organized,

plore things to do that have been prior-

why not IFE ?

itized” based upon millions of travelers

Data science can collate, tag and prioritize content to assist users to find the

aircraft’s current location and destination.

post or video. Google and Facebook dynamically prioritize and rank content based on user interest. Why aren’t IFE systems? In the context of IFE, we can take experiences from millions of people and apply machine learning and algorithms to analyze billions of reviews, photos, visits and other social records to identify and organize any IFE content. Aggregate Travel Experiences Around Your Network To service the desires of the experiential traveler, we can aggregate hundreds of thousands of landmarks, attractions and other points of interest around the globe and present them based on the routes you fly and your destinations. Analyse and Rank We can then allow passengers to ”ex-


Social ranking allows passengers to explore things to do with incredible accuracy; the most popular experiences trending anywhere, right now, even within a few city blocks. As the passenger continues to engage and explore we can make further, more accurate, personalized recommendations.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

most relevant, popular or recent article,

experiences, billions of data sets, and the

2. Make Recommendations Make Comparison Suggestions

According to a Forrester study, over 15% of visitors admit to buying recommended products We are all very familiar with the online experience of “Frequently bought together” or “People who bought this also bought”?

and experiences available to save to a wish list. Why not do this with travel and entertainment services?

Drive Product Placement and Sales

2. Based on passenger profile & interactions

Marketers have moved toward more active

3. Specific to the destination

product placement – which is what we technically refer to as product integration, where the product is woven into the passenger experience. For example, offering a passenger the ability to see things to do in their destination ranked by popularity and also suggested based on their actions. We know you land at noon and the potential to visit a local hot spot. Present in Context of Route

Here’s an example for Santa Ana Airport in California. Recommendations work best when created in a way that passengers would want to consume them, without perceiving them as commercial offerings. Let’s look at how we make the link between so-

Presenting activities, restaurants, hotels,

cially ranked

ground transport options, airport services,


and other data that is dynamically:

dations and

1. Trending right now & ranked by popularity


your route map.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Where value is created for the customer by facilitating the discovery for products

3. Promote Routes and Flights

Network Insight and Passenger Demand Every route of a network needs to contribute to an airline’s bottom line. Tap into customers inflight to gain valuable insights into real-time passenger demand and flight trends. There’s no better place to educate and analyze customer demand than when passengers are onboard with plenty of


time on their hands. Interactive Route and Destination Directory An intelligent route application can allow passengers to pick their preferred origin or destination and filter down to show flights and routes. Passengers can see flight duration and distance on the IFE screen.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

At the heart of every airline is its network of destinations and routes

IFE Flight Schedule and Calendar Choose to show your flight schedule and daily flight times within a calendar view. A flight summary view captures departure and arrival times, distance and other relevant details. Flight and route data can be stored onboard and updated using a media upload process to create this experience inflight without constantly streaming see pricing, inventory and book a flight from your website. Route Analytics A simple, playful and interactive experience powered by your flight data can showcase your destinations and allow passengers to create a wish list of future travel destinations, check flight times and much more to assist with your network planning.

Captured data can include: • Route search intelligence includes route views and searches by user • Ranking reports for a specific route, destination and other categories • Location intelligence to analyze trends based on the flight’s location


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

data. With connectivity, passengers can

4. Offer Destination Information and Services

Provide Relevant Travel Information and Services All passengers are on the move and as such have a specific need to consume information and services related to their journey. Drive ancillary revenue and enable your passengers to research and purchase travel services. Offer Ground Transportation Options All passengers need to take care of transport to and from an airport. Present car rental, rideshare, shuttle, or other transport options with pricing


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Location-aware IFE technologies can solve challenges for passengers, enhance their in-flight experience and drive ancillary revenue

based on distance from the airport to their final destination. It’s now possible to store distance and time estimates in an IFE system and easily add pricing from transportation providers. Ride and car booking options can be offered Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

from a connected aircraft. Showcase Your Partners Showcase your airline partners, hotels , financial services, car rental, restaurants, attractions in the context of the passenger’s journey. Offer Hyper-local Information and Experiences Data science enabled billions of traveler statistics to identify hundreds of thousands of attractions

by their popularity and

This offers huge value to

worldwide and rank them

specific location means

a passenger and an abil-

by popularity. Sharing

any passenger can explore

ity for an airline to earn a

these hyper-local experi-

what to do within walking

commission for bookings.

ences that are prioritized

distance of any hotel.


Summary Passengers are Craving Disruptive Innovation The digital revolution has given birth to a new generation of networked consumers with big imaginations and even bigger appetites for innovation. It’s not surprising that airlines’ passengers are craving a disruptive innovation---one that creates new solutions for their traveling needs and introduces a new onboard experience. They want something that captures the imagination and catalyzes change.

There are literally billions of experiences being consumed and posted each year driving demand for air travel. Intelligent IFE can tap into this rich pool of data to speak more personally to a passenger, recommend experiences, connect them with their destination, book a ride to their hotel, book destination activities, plan their next trip, suggest future flights and so much more.

Big Data has tremendous potential to enhance the inflight passenger experience to: • Make the passenger feel more understood • Create a more immersive experience • Provide location info and travel services • Gain insights into demand for flights • Create direct and ancillary airline revenue Do you want to leverage this rise in available data to create a competitive advantage that will leave other airlines behind? Contact


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Intelligent IFE

Two years ago, youth focused travel and tour company, Top Deck Travel, surveyed 31,000 millennials from 134 countries, to find out what they wanted from their travel experience. The results, according to Forbes, showed that “this younger generation is no longer seeking a party-animal atmosphere when traveling, and instead wants to fully immerse themselves into new cultures, and feast on local cuisine.” The top attraction and wish when travelling was experiencing a new culture (86%) and eating local foods (69%), far ahead of partying (44%) and shopping (28%). However, it’s not just the under 35s who are after these authentic experiences when travelling. This is a desire that crosses age groups and also includes older travellers with a higher spending power. In an interview last year, Marc Handl of luxury hotel group Rosewood, described them as “affluential explorers. These are people for whom luxury is a given, but they are primarily driven by their desire for authentic experiences when they travel and a sense of place in where they stay.”


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Affluential Explorers, the search for authentic experiences and the role of personalisation

However, authenticity is often subjective.

Which is where personalisation comes in,

To take one example, in our piece about

being able to accurately predict what a

Chinese travellers, we talk about coach-

passenger actually wants, and then being

loads of Chinese tourists descending on

able to sell the right kind of experiences or

the Oxfordshire (England) village of Kid-

services into him or her.


If you know where Mrs Jones in seat 31F is

To Chinese tourists, Kidlington has been

from, her age and where she is flying to,

marketed as the quintessential English

you will already have a fair idea of her pref-

village experience (it also happens to be

erences. If Mrs Jones has flown with you

on the way to Bicester Shopping Village).

many times before even more so.

However, if you took other nationalities there, they’d probably wonder what you

And if you start customising in real time

were doing.

the choices and options for (say) tours in

As a piece in the Conversation says, “au-

clicking on and what she’s watching, then

thenticity is a pretty complex idea – what

the experience will be even more personal

one person sees as an authentic experi-

for her - and the chances are much higher

ence, another may view as a sham.”

of a sale for you.


her final destination based on what she is

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Use AI and personalisation to deliver the right kind of authenticity

What’s the most booked experience via TripAdvisor? A skip the line pass for the Vatican Museums, St Peters and the Sistine Chapel. Meanwhile the third most booked experience is a skip the line pass for the Colosseum in Rome (second is the Chicago River Architecture Cruise). Overall TripAdvisor says that ‘skip the line’ made up four of the ten fastest growing experiences in 2017, and the second fastest growing category for US travelers by gross booking value. It makes sense - you’ve booked ten days


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Skip the line? An opportunity for airlines

When looking at overall categories of

allocation, and after a ten hour overnight

the kind of experiences travelers buy

flight to Rome, you don’t want to spend

from TripAdvisor, the network says that

much of your limited time waiting in

historical heritage tours, sunset cruises


and private day trips come top. Other

Rather, you want to get straight in and experience the world of the ancient Romans for yourself. And the opportunity is obvious. On that flight to Rome, while the passenger is browsing through experiences in the Italian capital, offer him / her queue jumping passes, so s/he doesn’t have to hang around.


categories in the top ten include culinary experiences, sailing trips and museum passes. Just like the queue jumping passes, these experiences and more can be served up to passengers while they are on their way to the destination, and while they are actively thinking of how to spend the days ahead.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

out of your precious two week vacation

Who are the world’s big-

This means Chinese tour-

But that isn’t the whole

gest spenders when it

ists want nothing more

story, as a report by Agility

comes to airport and in-

than to shop, right?

Research shows, in many

flight shopping?


cording to Swiss research consultancy ‘m1nd set’, the answer is the Chinese, who account for 13% of all duty free sales (ahead of South Koreans with 5% and Brits with 4%).


Wrong. Yes they are more likely to buy luxury items in airport retail concessions,

ways Chinese travelers are not so different to their peers from other countries.

and that in itself opens up

Much like other nationali-

opportunity for travel and

ties, they value experiences

aviation marketers.

over monetary purchases.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

What affluent Chinese travellers value - Culinary experiences, nature tours and shopping

Ask the residents of the sleepy Oxfordshire (England) village of Kidlington, who have seen coach loads of Chinese tourists roaming residential streets, taking pictures of locals and even entering gardens. Why? Because the village is being marketed in China as the symbol of a “true sense of the country”, and “the environment makes you feel you are closer to the simplicity of your original self”, according

The village also happens to be on the way to the shopping outlet centre of Bicester Village, showing how ‘cultural experience’ and retail trips very much can work hand in hand. As a result, while Agility Research’s find-

cial media use, with 94% of WeChat users

ings show that 69% of affluent Chinese

using it once a week.

travellers prefer to go somewhere where they can buy luxury items, 93% said a “cultural offering” or experience was a factor when choosing somewhere to travel to. When looking at which cultural experiences were the most important, local food and cuisine comes top for affluent Chinese travellers, followed by nature tours and safaris (in third place is outlet shopping). How do you reach Chinese travellers, and offer these experiences to them?

However, the potential is also to reach passengers in-flight via the map, and to create more of an interactive experience and to use it to drive ancillary revenues. FlightPath3Ds reach now extends to Air China, China Eastern Airlines, Juneyao Airlines and Xiamen Airlines, meaning there is scope for airlines to target Chinese outbound tourism via the interactive map. If Chinese travellers value cultural tours, especially involving food, above anything else then that’s the platform to do it on,

Social media is of course important, with

while they are in the air and thinking of

social media use in China differing from

their destination. And if they want trips to

that in the West. Unlike Facebook, which

shopping villages (the 3rd most popular

is largely blocked in China, Sina Weibo

option), you can do that via an interactive

and WeChat, take the lion’s share of so-

map as well.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

to a tour guide interviewed by the BBC.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Aviation Campaigns

WestJet Safety Video

The aircraft will operate on domestic flights for crew training and regulatory compliance before the first scheduled international flight between Calgary and London (Gatwick) on April 28th. To coincide with the Dreamliner entering the WestJet fleet, the airline also released a new safety video called “First Flight.” The video, which is animated, features a child character feeling a sense of wonder at her ‘first flight’, which neatly ties into WestJet flying the Dreamliner for the first time. According to One Mile at a Time, the video isn’t over the top like so many safety videos are these days, instead it “has cute visuals, is easy to understand, and feels calming.”


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

On February 20th, WestJet’s first 787 Dreamliner, made its official debut when it was used for a commercial flight between Toronto and Calgary.

The Air Asia Restaurant

That hasn’t stopped airlines like United pushing back and showing off the recipes served to premium class passengers via its own cookbook. However while United’s cookbook showcases the airline’s Polaris cabin, one LCC is so confident of the quality of its in-flight catering that it is opening its own restaurant. Air Asia is considering opening a new restaurant, “Santan”, which will be named after the airline’s in-flight menu, with AirAsia Group CEO Tony Fernandes quoted in the Singapore Straits Times as saying, “I think our food is fantastic. We believe in it so much we’re going to start a fast-food restaurant out of it.” The Santan website gives a hint of some of the items that might be available, such as “Uncle Chin’s Chicken Rice”, Pak Nasser’s Nasi Lemak and Chicken Tikka Masala with Garlic Naan.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Airline food hasn’t had the best reputation over the years, and is often the butt of jokes.

British Airways Retro Liveries

Airways Centenary Year celebrations, which included a BA 747 being painted in retro BOAC colours. British Airways has now followed this up with two more ‘heritage’ aircraft. An Airbus 319 is now flying in BEA livery, which appeared predominantly on domestic and European routes between 1959 and 1968. Meanwhile, the third heritage aircraft is a Boeing 747 painted in the “Landor design”, which will be recognisable for many as it flew on British Airways aircraft between 1984-1997. The 747 entered service on 9 March, and will be flying to long-haul destinations served by the Boeing 747, with the design remaining on the aircraft until it retires in 2023.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Last month, our cover story was around the British

Etihad Special Olympics Dreamliner

honoured to support the Special Olympics

Summer Games which were held in Abu

World Games Abu Dhabi 2019 and to

Dhabi from 14-21 March, Etihad painted

unveil this very special new livery in

one of its 787-9 Dreamliners in Special

recognition of the greatness of the Games

Olympics themed livery.

and in celebration of the achievements,

The livery featured the images of four UAE Athletes, who took part in the games -

incredible athletes who will participate.

Swimmer Omar Al Shami, runner Hamda

“This aircraft will continue to fly long after

Al Hosani and bowlers Saleh Al Merri and

the Games and is just one of the ways the

Mariam Al Hosani were all present for the

legacy will live on. “


Another airline, which strongly supports

The Special Olympics World Summer

the Special Olympics is United, which

Games is the biggest sports and

last year announced an initiative where

humanitarian event of 2019, and featured

the airline’s 60,000+ staff will be trained

7,500 athletes from 190 countries taking

to better serve the needs of passengers


with intellectual disabilities. United also

Robin Kamark, Etihad Airways Chief Commercial Officer, said: “We are


commitment and determination of the

supports various Special Olympics events in the USA.

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

To mark the Special Olympic World

Travelport - Travel unified

the side of one of its 787 Dreamliners. Another company which has launched an initiative encouraging the industry to better cater for passengers with intellectual disabilities is Travelport. With the Travel Unified campaign, Travelport is seeking to improve the awareness and use of the SSR code DPNA, which denotes special needs passengers. A micro-site gives further details: Travelport’s six month long campaign will reach more than 100,000 travel agents in 30 countries and content will be displayed to agents more than 3.5 million times making it one of Travelport’s biggest ever digital media campaigns. Travelport will also be seeking to raise awareness among the intellectually disabled community through a range of initiatives across social and traditional media.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Earlier we talked about Etihad featuring four UAE Special Olympics team members on

Plaza Premium Lounges - Your Airport Moment

their “best, unique airport moments” can

Lounges has launched a campaign in the

win gift cards to be used in exchange for

Far East and the UK called Your Airport

lounge passes.

Moment, under the overall umbrella message of ‘Everyone is a traveller.’ A series of short video ads show a collection of airport moments, from the tired family having to transit between flights, to the dishevelled looking businessman arriving on the red eye prior to a meeting. In each case, the lounge transforms the passenger(s), e.g in the business executive’s case it makes him ready for his meeting post a shower and coffee / breakfast.


Overall, we’re not fans of this campaign. Cardboard cut-out characters (e.g. business guy on the red eye), bad acting, stirring music and stereotypical situations (e.g business guy is now refreshed and gazes over the runway drinking his coffee while an attendant smies) lead to a feeling of unreality when watching the ad spots. As an alternative idea, why not show what goes on inside the lounges? Show how they can be a source of inspiration, cre-

The campaign is under-pinned by a social

ativity and productivity before your flight

media competition passengers posting

(lounge hackathon anyone?).

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Paid for lounge service Plaza Premium

Southwest Storytellers

A short-list of 100 was then chosen,

the story of Bob Golan, an entirely

where influencers had to fill out a

fictitious character, who had a ready

questionnaire, including about their

made Instagram account, largely filled

“social influence”, before 10 finalists were

up of destination stock photos and 12,000


followers. We bought Bob for $60 to demonstrate

campaign follows a similar one by US

to a conference how easily social media

train company Amtrak, which ran a

numbers can be gamed, and to warn

‘social media residency programme’

against an over reliance of vanity metrics.

called #AmtrakTakeMeThere, where

In fact, vanity metrics appears to be what Southwest in part based a February competition on. “Influencers” were given the opportunity to compete for the grand

people with large social media followings, rather than professional bloggers, shared their stories about riding on Amtrak.

prize of up to 12 round trips by posting

The Southwest story-teller campaign

a photo related story and tagging

follows a similar initiative that the airline

Southwest. The catch? It was only open

ran in 2018.

to people with at least 2500 followers.


Mobile Marketer says that Southwest’s

Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

In the previous issue we talked about

Wonder Takes Flight Canadian Airports Council

Canadian Airports Council (CAC). The aim of the campaign is to remind Canadians of the wonder you once felt stepping into an airport. In particular, the Canadian Airport Council says that while many frequent travellers simply see an airport as the gateway to their next destination, Wonder Takes Flight wants to remind them of the excitement they once felt simply by being within the airport. The campaign does this by looking at airports through the eyes of a child, and featuring “beautiful airport visuals and some of the impressive technology that lives within Canada’s airports.” This is a new direction for the CAC as previous campaigns focused very much on an economic message by talking about the benefits airports bring to communities in terms of jobs and investment.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Wonder Takes Flight is the name of a new bilingual English / French campaign by the

Scoot - M.A.R.V.I.E Chatbot

of the dozens of airline Valentine’s Stunts, we’ll pull out one - as it involves chatbots, which we intend to look at in more detail in an upcoming issue. Interacting with the Scoot M.A.R.V.I.E chatbot on February 14th, meant sending him a message with the heading “Time for Love.” He then responded with travel recommendations for you and your significant other along with “travel recommendations and advice on how to get your other half to say yes to a getaway.” M.A.R.V.I.E stands for “most awesome and resourceful virtual intern ever”, and was developed and launched last year by Caravelo for Scoot. This made Scoot, at the time, the first Asian airline with a chatbot to respond to customer queries via Facebook Messenger.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Our last issue was already in production when Valentine’s Day came along, so out

Jewel Changi Airport

of amenities on offer, and due to the fact that SIN has turned Changi Airport into an experience - a destination in its own right. That perception will only be reinforced by the opening of Jewel Changi Airport (‘Jewel’), which the airport calls “a multi-dimensional tourist destination.” Designed by a consortium comprising Safdie Architects, as well as architects from RSP Architects Planners and Engineers and Benoy, Jewel will feature a distinctive domeshaped façade made of glass and steel. The airport says that the concept for Jewel’s design “represents the juxtaposition of a park and marketplace. This is exemplified in the lush Forest Valley and majestic Rain Vortex that take center stage in the complex, surrounded by over 280 retail stores and eateries.” A preview video summarises the core idea - tropical forest meets shopping mall. However, this being Singapore everything is being done on a grand scale. For example the context features the world’s tallest indoor waterfall (the “rain vortex”). The project, which seeks to draw people to the airport even if they don’t necessarily have a flight to catch, is also being heavily pre-promoted with its own micro-site and social media channels.


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

In ‘best airport’ surveys Singapore regularly ranks at or near the top, due to the amount

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Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

How would you like insights from 100+ aviation leaders to help you grow in your career?

Aviation brands in this issue Air Asia British Airways Canadian Airports Council Dubai International Airport Embraer Etihad FlightPath3D JetBlue London City Airport Lufthansa Norwegian Plaza Premium Lounges S7 Airlines SAS Singapore Changi Airport Scoot Southwest Travelport United Virgin Atlantic WestJet


Airline Marketing Monthly | March/April 2019

Alaska Airlines

Profile for Airline Marketing Monthly (AMM)

Airline Marketing Monthly - April 2019