VIEWS: 13 PAGES: 8 CATEGORY: Market Research POSTED ON: 4/2/2011
Airlines are one of the most innovative companies with respect to marketing and promotion. Today, some airlines give presents to their passengers, enable them to book the flight through Facebook or offer wireless in-flight entertainment.
TRANSPORT T o p I n n o vaT I v e a I r l I n e s Airlines are one of the most innovative companies with respect to marketing and pro- motion. Today, some airlines give presents to their passen- gers, enable them to book the flight through Facebook or offer wireless in-flight enter- tainment. TRANSPORT top innov a t i v e a i r l i ne s condor to launcH Wireless in-fligHt entertainment system German holiday carrier Condor will become condor, however, will only offer wireless IFE to to weight savings of almost half a ton on a 767, the first airline to install Lufthansa Systems’ access the ‘walled garden’ content available reducing annual fuel consumption by around new Boardconnect wireless in-flight entertain- on the onboard server. 20 tonnes per aircraft. The savings are even ment (IFE) system on its Boeing 767 aircraft. greater if no seat-back screens are installed, unlike conventional wired IFE systems, Board- WeigHt savings which is increasingly becoming an option as connect is essentially an intranet on a plane more and more passengers bring their own that replaces the several kilometers of cables, according to Lufthansa Systems, a subsidiary of the Lufthansa Group, the elimination of wir- Internet-enabled devices on board. Lufthansa that are usually needed to connect every single ing and data distribution hardware could lead Systems says that thanks to the minimal instal- seat, with a wireless network that allows pas- sengers to connect to content on an onboard server with their own laptops, smart phones or tablet Pcs. alternatively, integrated seat-back screens or mobile devices provided by the air- line can be used to access the Wi-Fi network. Walled garden Passengers logging on to the wireless IFE system are shown a startpage that lists the available IFE programming, which can be fully branded and customized by the airline. Board- connect uses standard software solutions. For example, multimedia content is served up via microsoft Silverlight, a browser plug-in which comes pre-installed on most new devices. For iPhone, iPad or android users, apps are being developed that will be available on the Apple app Store and the android marketplace. If an aircraft is also equipped with broadband access to the wider Internet, passengers can also surf and send and receive e-mails while in the air. april, 2011 — 40 — TRANSPORT top innov a t i v e a i r l i ne s lation effort (as no wiring is required) its Board- stand out from the competition, particularly in connect solution is also interesting for smaller the tourism industry.” aircraft such as the a320 and B737, which fly medium-haul routes and generally offer very Wireless ife limited IFE options. As Flightglobal reports, the concept of wire- condor less IFE is not new, although it has yet to be www.caucasusexplorer.com implemented in commercial aircraft. Boeing, Lufthansa Systems expects the wireless IFE for instance, originally planned to offer wire- system to be available on the first condor B767 less IFE on its 787 Dreamliner. Panasonic avi- by summer 2011. It is unknown at this point onics and Thales were successful in developing what kind of wireless device condor, a wholly- wireless systems for the 787 from a technical owned subsidiary of travel giant Thomas cook, standpoint, but wireless distribution required will rent out to passengers and to what extent too much sacrifice in functionality and didn’t the content on offer can be accessed for free. achieve the desired weight savings, so Boeing a likely offer, however, will be a combination ultimately decided to offer wired in-seat IFE of free and paid premium content. For condor, to 787 customers. Besides Lufthansa Systems’ the wireless IFE is a relatively cheap upgrade of Boardconnect, aircraft manufacturers such its current IFE offering which consists of mov- as airbus and Bombardier are currently also ies shown on an overhead screen, while por- studying wireless in-flight entertainment sys- table DvD players are handed out in comfort tems. class. Says Rainer Kröpke, Head of marketing at condor, “In-flight entertainment is an impor- tant part of the travel experience and a way to http://www.airlinetrends.com april, 2011 — 41 — TRANSPORT top innov a t i v e a i r l i ne s spanair taps demograpHics to deliver Holiday surprise 7,000 users have shared it in Facebook and Twitter. about spanair Spanair S.A., a Spanish airline was founded in tHe data December of 1986. Spanair began operations with its international charter flights at the Shackleton segmented passengers into one end of March 1988, carrying tourists to Spain of 12 groups based on customer data from from more than 100 European airports. Since Spanair. Each group received a different gift then more than 104* million passengers have based on age, sex and professional status. flown with Spanair. In February of 1994 Spanair began its domestic scheduled operation within tHe cHannel Spain, while at the same time establishing its ground personnel service system. At present, The group filmed the event and then placed 87% of the company’s flights are scheduled, video and images showing how the campaign while the remaining 13% are split between took shape onto youTube, Facebook and Twit- Charter and other operations. ter. Spanair.com tHe creative creative is composed almost entirely of edited into video bites and images of passen- tHe offer unstaged displays of surprise and delight gers displaying their gifts. Spanish airline Spanair surprised nearly 200 among passengers at the time of the event, passengers on one of its flights from Barcelona tHe verdic to the canary Islands as part of its “unexpected Hats off to Spanair who took “surprise and Luggage” campaign, developed by Shackle- delight” to a new level this past christmas Eve. ton. While waiting for their luggage at close to By focusing on the customer experience, they midnight on christmas Eve, all 190 passengers let the consumer carry forward the brand via onboard saw individually wrapped gifts come word-of-mouth and viral buzz. With a stronger out of the luggage carousel. PR component, we can only imagine how far The campaign has become a hit in Internet the message could have gone. and social media. In 48 hours, the video that shows the christmas campaign has received By Kevin McKeefery more than 100,000 views and more than http://www.dmnews.com april, 2011 — 42 — TRANSPORT top innov a t i v e a i r l i ne s malaysia airlines: booking, cHeck-in and sHaring tHrougH facebook Malaysia Airlines further re-affirmed its lead- ership as a social media innovator with the launch of mHbuddy on Facebook. The appli- cation which can be accessed from the new Malaysia Airlines Facebook page, allows Face- book’s 500 million users to book and check-in for a flight while sharing their trip details with their social network. Developed with malaysia airlines by SITa Lab, the research group of air transport IT pro- vider SITa, mHbuddy is an application on Face- book Platform that allows passengers to book and check-in for a flight while sharing their trip details with their friends. malaysia airlines Executive vice President commercial Strategy, Dr. amin Khan said: “our customers are spending more and more time on social networks and Malaysia Airlines is one of the most active airlines using social media to drive revenue. We have over 380,000 fans who actively engage with us on our existing social media channels.” “The introduction of mHbuddy really takes flight bookings to another level. Besides open- ing up another distribution channel for ticket he quipped, “no other airline allows its cus- the destination they are headed for. They are sales, now, our customers can also experience tomers to integrate their travels so deeply into also prompted if any of their friends on the amazing convenience. at the same time, they the Facebook social graph. neither do they Facebook network are also planning to travel can stay connected with their friends,” he said. allow customers to check-in via Facebook.” to the same destination. If they like, they can Amin acknowledged that a few airlines are “With mHbuddy, customers who book a also share their itinerary with friends,” said already selling tickets on Facebook. However, flight are reminded of their friends who live at Amin. april, 2011 — 43 — TRANSPORT top innov a t i v e a i r l i ne s In addition, mHbuddy users can check in via Lab is delighted to work with malaysia airlines Facebook and select their seats. During seat to offer this ground-breaking service.” selection, they will also be able to view the Since its establishment three years ago, SITa seats of their friends who are travelling on the Lab has delivered numerous innovations, sev- same flight. This gives mHbuddy users a really eral of which were developed with Malaysia easy and convenient way to connect with their airlines including the world's first kiosks to sell friends when they travel on Malaysia Airlines, airline tickets using the apple iPad and an aug- wherever they are. mented reality application for the apple iPhone Speaking at Innovation in airline Distribution to allow customers to pick up the best airline 2011 in London, Jim Peters, SITa chief Technol- deals from nearby airports. In 2009, the airline ogy officer who heads up the SITa Lab, said: launched the hugely popular mHmobile which “SITa has always focused on technological enables travelers to book flights and access up innovation that the air transport industry and to date travel information while on the move. passengers want. This is another example of In 2010, malaysia airlines was recognized for how we are enhancing the travel experience its active engagement on Social media by win- for passengers and giving them applications ning the "Best use of Social media to Drive that are relevant to the way they live their Revenue" award at the inaugural Simplifly- lives. This initiative is a great step forward and ing-airline Business Social media Excellence gives Facebook users the opportunity to do Awards for Airlines. what Facebook does best – keeping in touch and sharing life experiences with friends. SITa http://www.malaysiaairlines.com april, 2011 — 44 — TRANSPORT top innov a t i v e a i r l i ne s klm surprises travelers to see ‘HoW Happiness spreads’ Traveling by air can be stressful; you’re rushing to get things packed, leaving loved ones behind or maybe even ending a wonderful vacation. In november 2010 Dutch airline KLm started a new campaign to surprise travelers who check in on Foursquare, a location-based social net- working website, with something personal that might make their travel a little less stressful. When someone checks in on Foursquare at one of KLm’s venues at amsterdam Schipol air- port, their main hub, the airline’s KLm Surprise team goes to work. They do as much research as they can about the person using the infor- air new zealand fairy A related ‘random act of kindness‘ initiative is the ‘Air New Zealand Fairy,’ a virtual fairy who once a day publicly grants a wish from an Air New Zealand customer. Customers of the airline can make wishes to the ‘Fairy’ via Twitter (being nice and creative helps) and hope that she will honour their request. Most wishes granted are related to the airline’s loyalty program, for example requests for a couple of hundred frequent flier points to make it to a next tier, but free lounge passes or seat upgrades are also given away. In a separate initiative, Air New Zealand also gives free admission to its lounge to foursquare users who are the ‘mayor’ of select airports and terminals served by the After a trip to Canada, the Surprise Team awaited Theo at the gate with a hot cup of Dutch Douwe Egberts coffee airline. and some fresh newspapers. It also gave KLM the opportunity to have a chat with this IT expert about the failing Airlinetrends.com mobile boarding system. april, 2011 — 45 — TRANSPORT top innov a t i v e a i r l i ne s Ed and his daughter came to pick up Ed’s Barcelona We surprised Linda just before she was leaving for based brother, sister in law and their newborn daugh- Rome together with her mother. Rome is a very large ter. This was their very first time to see the baby girl… city so there's a lot of distance to make. That shouldn't Cute pink rompers and a cuddly toy did the trick. What be any problem for Linda because she is a sporty a nice family picture! person. That's why we gave her a Nike SportBand. With this she can monitor the distance while strolling mation they’ve posted publicly on Twitter and around in Rome. Have fun with it, Linda! Facebook and find a gift that’s customized to that particular customer. They then attempt to closely monitoring tweets and Facebook posts make contact with the person through social about the campaign to see how “happiness networks and other means to meet up with spreads” and what kind of conversation devel- them to deliver the gift. ops around it. The promotion ran until the end It’s clear the KLm team is really taking this of november. The airline says it may pop up to heart. One customer, Willem, was going to again from time to time. miss his team’s biggest soccer game of the year Greeting your customers and thanking them while on a trip to new york. KLm surprised him for visiting your business after they’ve checked in with a Lonely Planet guide to new york with is, of course, the best practice for any company the best soccer bars highlighted to make sure using Foursquare, but KLm Surprise takes it to a he wouldn’t miss the game. They found that whole new level. The personal touch that’s exhib- another customer, Perry, was celebrating his ited through each of the interactions shows that birthday and surprised him with a birthday the KLm team is really looking to make peoples’ card and glass of champagne. days while they’re traveling, and that goes a long The airline is using the KLm Surprise campaign way to “spreading happiness.” as an experiment in using social networks and to see how their customers respond. They’re http://aboutfoursquare.com/klm-surprise/ april, 2011 — 46 —
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