We live in a highly interconnected world where seasonal, unexpected, and other timely events occur every day. As marketing analyses have shown, airports that properly address the impact of these events often see a boost in enplanements compared to those that remain silent. When it comes to marketing your small or mid-size airport, Advance Aviation, a branch of Advance Media New York, knows that timing is everything. Here, we’ll provide some insights into how your airport can implement a marketing strategy that is agile enough for our eventful world.
Getting in the Holiday Spirit
When might you see some of the largest air travel patterns each year? You guessed it: the holiday season. When the snow starts to fall and people plan to head home to see their families, your airport will likely see a spike in visitors. However, you shouldn’t take this seasonal increase for granted. Rather, you should grip travelers with a timely marketing strategy that shows them the benefit of flying with you year-round.
Back in 2016, Heathrow Airport in London, England ran a holiday TV campaign that earned over 100 million Facebook views. This ad featured a young girl boarding her first flight and displayed the following message: “To the next 70 years of first flights.” By striking a chord with viewers during this emotionally salient season, Heathrow engaged with travelers and showed them their lasting value. In fact, it saw an 11% increase in participating passengers, demonstrating just how much its effort resonated with travelers.
Responding to Unexpected Events
Whether it’s something as impactful as the outbreak of a virus or as regional as the loss of a sports team, airports that join in on these conversations can engage with travelers in unprecedented ways. For example, as a small or mid-size airport representative, your facility is likely steeped in its surrounding community. So if a local sports team makes it to a big, state-wide competition, your airport could run a successful campaign that highlights or even discounts its flights to the big game.
Further, in cases of worldwide illnesses, your airport should swiftly demonstrate how it is prioritizing the safety of its travelers. Whether your team demonstrates this via email, a video advertisement, or a social media post, your travelers will be grateful to know that your facility is taking measures to keep them healthy when it matters most.
Change the Way You Use Social Media
Year after year, you’re focused on creating a social media content calendar and getting the posts online in a timely fashion. But if you haven’t switched up your airport’s strategy in a while, your content can start to feel stale, and your followers will begin to notice. And with a cookie-cutter social media strategy in place, it’ll be difficult to attract new travelers and build trust between potential customers and your brand.
This year, it’s time to finally ditch all of the social media strategies that haven’t shown a return on your investment and start experimenting with new ones. Depending on your goals, this can take form in a host of ways, such as:
- Choosing new days and times to post on social media
- Changing up your content with newly published blog posts, interactive webpages, and more
- Dedicating more time and resources to the social media networks proven to be popular with travelers, such as Instagram
- Interacting with your current followers, as well as travelers posting publicly about their trips
- Utilizing live broadcasting capabilities and other forms of video content
Using an Appropriate Tone
When responding to worldwide events, your marketing efforts must use the right tone. In some cases, a serious, compassionate tone may be required. In others, however, a humorous tone can engage travelers and drive up your enplanements.
As an example, Ryanair, an Irish budget airline, tweeted the following comedic response to Germany’s unexpected loss in the 2018 FIFA World Cup:
- “Making an unexpected exit? We have Löw fares…”
Löw is the last name of Germany’s head coach, Joachim Löw, which added a touch of humor to their social media post. But how did Ryanair make such a timely, witty statement? The answer is two-fold: quick marketing agency cycles and a great working relationship with their marketing partner.
For an airline marketing campaign to be agile, airports need marketing partners that they can trust to make creative decisions at the drop of a hat. If your airport is looking for such a partner, Advance Aviation has the skill set you need. Located in Syracuse, NY, we specialize in helping small and mid-size airports increase their enplanements with engaging, timely marketing. To learn more, contact us today.