Today, I want to take you guys to a little portion of my life. I think I have mentioned it before that Airplanes are Bae and that is why apart from my Major (Marine Management), I also pursue Airline-related courses. Travelling is very sophisticated especially if it’s by the plane, there is that element of feeling like you are in Broadway or just being in another level. And this will vibe you up more if you are travelling in a VIP seat, gosh those services and luxuries may make you wish to never come to ‘earth’ anytime soon.
So, today we are going to just deeply understand what Airlines are and what they are all about. An Airline is simply a company that delivers air transport services for freight and passengers. What takes it for an Airline to get recognized is the issuance of an air operating certificate. And Airlines vary in size from the small domestic ones to those that fit in the international levels. I don’t want to dive deeper on that but I should tell you that the biggest Airline currently is American Airlines Group and the one that is immediately coming to take over is mine, yes, the dream is real!
Just like any other industry, the Airline industry also has its ways of marketing; and the most important thing in marketing is to first understand the characteristics of your product or service before you determine your marketing strategy.
So below are some of the special features of Airline marketing:
- Need for fine market segmentation
Airlines have various market segments that have different travel motivations, service expectations and price sensitivities. Examples here can be for the first-class passengers; these people won’t care a bit about the price allocated, all they want are luxurious service standards and to be pampered by the hostesses all way through and we can have the family holiday traffic (Economics); these ones don’t care about the service standards, all they want is to reach their destination safe and the first thing they check at is the prices of the Airlines and most of the times they go for the low-priced ones.
- Highly perishable product
Did you know that the Airline’s product cannot be stored for future sales? So yes, when boarding is closed for a particular flight, all the unutilized seats on that plane go waste. For increased profitability in this industry, all the seats should be occupied at all times. This reminds me of the ‘Low-Cost Carriers’ – they are small upcoming Airline industries (EasyJet, JamboJet, fly540) for domestic services and they happen to be so cheap that most of the times, the plane is completely filled. They have somehow become an emerging challenge to the big Airline companies like Kenya Airways and the like.
- Dynamic Market
Airline’s product is a service that is basically more about the experience of the passenger throughout the airlift. A happy experience will ensure that the passenger will again book with the same Airline any other time. This infact is the whole essence of competitive advantage of one Airline to another. Passengers usually take a look at the prices, the promotions, services offered and the distribution. The moment a certain Airline messes, it messes with the whole perception of the passenger.
Hmm…are we seeing some airplane right infront of our eyes? How does it feel? Well, a lot more makes airplanes just the most amazing type of transport.
Ever heard of Emirates Airline?
Have a look at how first class seats are (Emirates).
Check out how real it all gets :
Now, let’s get back to reality.
How is marketing planning done? In any organization; strategic planning is key, the Airline Industry is no exception. Strategic planning involves making the right advance decisions that relates to courses of actions that will be taken in the future. This will involve taking a look at the goals/objectives, assessing the available resources, doing a positive audit of where the company actually stands, assessing alternative courses of action and preparing of plans to be conducted.
And you may ask what the benefits of the marketing plan are. It provides a thorough analysis of situations/objectives, it provides a guideline for profitable development, and it results in a surrounding that is less prone to risks and uncertainties.
So, well, well it’s just what makes a clothing company, or a manufacturing firm work that also makes an Airline distinguish itself from its various rivals. The customer is usually the main aspect of consideration and it usually takes the simplest but yet the most incredible of services to win people over.
Ever wondered why air hostesses are not like matatu touts? That their beauty is striking and most times, they are ladies? That is one way of winning hearts over, or rather winning your clients over with a smile plastered on some cute lips, high standards of care and attendance from gorgeous ladies that have the most amazing of features. I remember I was boarding the Ethiopian Airline sometime back and those ladies, wow. If I, a female can narrate their splendor, I don’t know what men have to say! And we never know, it could be those faces that keep on drawing a certain passenger to a certain Airline every single time. We are human beings and we all have different tastes and preferences; that is why they undoubtedly say that ‘one man’s meat is another man’s poison (pardon the cliché).
And as we are about to take off, kindly switch off your thoughts and deactivate your airplane mode until we read again!