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The Experience is the Message – Creating Unique Airline Brand Experiences

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Creating better brands through strategic touchpoint design: In a case study we evaluated the brand experience of top European airlines. Based on findings, we designed solutions to orchestrate and optimize touchpoints and create beneficial and brand-supporting experiences. Combining the user-centered design approach and the business-driven marketing technique, brand experiences are designed to both offer maximum value for the user and at the same time convey relevant brand messages and thus serve the business.

This study was compiled for and presented at IA Conference "Brand Experience" in May 2014 in Berlin.

Publicada em: Marketing, Negócios

The Experience is the Message – Creating Unique Airline Brand Experiences

  1. 1. VATTER & JORDAN The Experience Is The Message Creating Unique Airline Brand Experiences Christian Vatter & Martin Jordan
  2. 2. Contents – BrandExperience:Whatitisandwhyitisimportant – Airlines:Differentiatingthroughmarketingbutproviding interchangeableexperiences – OurStudy:Theprototypicalflightexperiencejourney – AirlineBrandExperienceDesign:Ourideasthatturnstandard brandexperiencesoftwowellknownairlinesintouniqueones
  3. 3. VATTER & JORDAN About Brand Experience PhotobyDavidOliete
  4. 4. “Weareintheageofthecustomer. Howwellyouservethemwilldetermine yoursuccess.” DavidCooperstein,VicePresidentForresterResearch
  5. 5. Source:Forrester “Empoweredbuyersdemandanewlevel ofcustomerobsession” Age of manufacturing Age of distribution Age of information Age of the customer
  6. 6. Notunderstandingcustomersneeds mightbefatal 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 Blockbuster Revenue Netflix Revenue $6Billion $4Billion $2Billion $0 $ 2.2 Billion Bankrupt Source:www.go-digital.net
  7. 7. Reachingthetopwithdelivering customervalue ImagebyZappos
  8. 8. Creatinggreatexperiencesisseenas thenewbenchmark Source:Forbes,2014
  9. 9. Lesson #1 It is a necessity to understand users and create value for them.
  10. 10. Let’schangeperspectives: Businessesareinanageofextreme competition.
  11. 11. Shorterinnovation cycles Globalcompetition Higherdemandfor newproducts Moreproductspercategory Strongrivalriesbetweenofferings
  12. 12. ExampleVolkswagen:Morethantwiceas manymodelsinthepast30years 0 6 12 18 24 1960 1970 1980 1990 2000 2007 2008 2012 minicar smallcar compactcar mid-rangecar executivecar pickup 9 Number of Volkswagen models 4 11 9 9 14 16 18 21 Source:Wikipedia
  13. 13. Asimplegoalforeachmarketplayer:To bepreferredovercompetitors
  14. 14. Thestrongestmeanstocreate preferenceistheconceptofbrand*.
  15. 15. *)“aperson’sgutfeelingaboutaproduct,serviceor organization” (MartyNeumeier)
  16. 16. 0,80€ 2,80€ Brands createawillingness topaymore forotherwisesimilarproducts…
  17. 17. …ordecidewhowillbepicked Last day of business of closing drugstore chain Schlecker
  18. 18. Source:Interbrand Uniquebrandshavethepowerto increasecompanyvalue
  19. 19. Lesson #1 It is a necessity to understand users and create value for them. Lesson #2 It is a necessity for businesses to create brand preference.
  20. 20. Therearetwogoals #2 Build brand preference #1 Create value for the user
  21. 21. It‘snoteitheror Photograph:EckhardPecher
  22. 22. BrandExperiencecanunitebothgoals #2 Build brand preference #1 Create value for the user Brand Experience
  23. 23. BrandExperiencecanunitebothgoals & Wherecanthe experience–when dealingwithabrand –beimprovedsoitis beneficialfor customers? Howcanthese improvementsbe manifestationsof whatthebrand standsfor? Build brand preferenceCreate value for the user
  24. 24. VATTER & JORDAN About Airlines
  25. 25. Airlinesarebrands
  26. 26. Theyinvestinbranddesigntocreatea uniqueappearance
  27. 27. … Notification to Check-in Self Check-in Travel to airport Counter for check-in and/or baggage drop off Security Waiting at gate Admission/Boarding Entering and being greeted Seating procedure Announcements Starting Service drinks/ food Clearing table Announcement captain … Butthe experiences theyprovidedo notdifferfrom eachother
  28. 28. Eventhesmallestgesturemayhelpan airlinetostickout Airberlin created a lot of media buzz when giving out chocolate hearts upon exiting the plane
  29. 29. Berlin-Rom, 23.05.- 25.05. easyJet 159EUR KLM 215EUR Lufthansa 232EUR Whyshouldcustomerspaymorefora brand? Source:Swoodoo,retrievedMay15
  30. 30. Brand the experience, because the experience is the message.
  31. 31. VATTER & JORDAN About our flight experience study
  32. 32. OurApproach Understanding the experience PainandWow points,importance ofencounters, emotioncurves duringjourney Interviews, CulturalProbes, SelfExperience Understanding the brands Whatdobrands standfor,what valuesare associatedwith them Communication Analysis,Interviews Creating Brand Experience Ideas Ideasbasedonpain andwowpointsthat bringbrandtolive
  33. 33. 40.ooomiles flown 18travellers interviewed 5culturalprobes collected 8Airlines studies
  34. 34. Privatetravelers Businesstravelers Short-haulflyers Long-haulflyers Experiencedflyers Inexperiencedflyers
  35. 35. The prototypical experience journey
  36. 36. General observation: Airplanejourneysarecomplexandwithmany insecuritiesandopenquestionsinregardstotimeplanning,baggage regulations,customsandimmigration.
  37. 37. General observation: Forbusinessfrequenttravellerstimehas enormousvalue.Theycalculatethetripwithoutmuchwiggleroom,any deviationfromroutinecausesstressinstantly.
  38. 38. Prototypical experience journey Preparation At Airport AftermathIn Plane Emotion Curve
  39. 39. Preparation Searching & Booking Preparation Check-In Trip to airport Thejourneybeginswiththesearchfor flightoptions. Theclosertheflightgets,themore stresslevelsrise(positiveandnegative).
  40. 40. Counter Security Waiting at gate Boarding At Airport Entering the plane Alackoftimepredictability,control andorientationaswellasstop-and-go proceduresarethereasonsforquitea bitofstressbeforetheflight.
  41. 41. Seating Settling in Exiting Settlinginone‘sseatistheturning pointofthejourney– stresswanesand boredomsetsinuntilshortlybefore landing. In Plane Employees Activities Service Food Entertainment Syst. Physical Stress In-Flight factors
  42. 42. At Airport Baggage Claim Transfer to city The aftermath Whetherchangingplanesorfinding yourwaytothecity– theunknown situationatarrivalcanbeasourceof stress. Thejourneyonlyendswhenthebag canbeputdownandopened. Aftermath At AirportAt Airport Arrival at destination
  43. 43. Prototypical experience journey Preparation At Airport AftermathIn Plane Searching & Booking Preparation Check-In Trip to airport At airport Counter Security Waiting at gate Boarding Way to plane Entering the plane Seating Settling-in During flight: – Employees – Service – Food – Activities – Entertainment System – Physical stress Exiting Arrival at airport Baggage claim Transfer to city Arrival at destination The aftermath
  44. 44. VATTER & JORDAN Airline Brand Experience Design
  45. 45. Thefollowingsolutionswereinventedbyusto showtheprincipleofbrandexperiencedesignat work: Easingoutpainpointsandbringingthe brandtolifeatthesametime. Wecreateduniqueexperiencejourneysfortwo airlines,yettheprincipleworksforanyservice brand.
  46. 46. The Lufthansa Brand Experience
  47. 47. What does the brand Lufthansa stand for? Here is a TV commercial from 2013 .
  48. 48. reliability precision germanness Brand Values Anair-tripisacomplex processfullof uncertainties.For mosttravellers, predictabilityand beingintheknow helpsalot. User Insight
  49. 49. The Lufthansa experience journey Preparation At Airport AftermathIn Plane Searching & Booking Preparation Check-In Trip to airport At airport Counter Security Waiting at gate Boarding Way to plane Entering the plane Seating Settling-in During flight: – Employees – Service – Food – Activities – Entertainment System – Physical stress Exiting Arrival at airport Baggage claim Transfer to city Arrival at destination The aftermath yellow: Steps where Lufthansa can best play out its brand values
  50. 50. Insight Flyingmeanstimeawayfromhomeorwork. Quiteafewtravellerswanttoarrivejustintime. Solution Lufthansasupportsthosetravellerswitha search/planningtoolthatisbasedontheactual timeoftheappointmentallowingforprecise planning.
  51. 51. Insight Inordertohavetheimportanttripinformation inoneplace,travellersoftenkeepahand- writtennotewiththem. Solution Lufthansaaidswithaconvenientprintable overviewoftheimportanttriprelateddata givingsecurity.
  52. 52. Insight Thereisatrade-offbetweennotwantingto wastetoomuchtimeattheairportandnot wantingtomissone’sflight. Solution Lufthansahelpswiththe”TravelCompanion“,an appthatprovidesnecessaryinformationduring thetrip– e.g.itconsiderstransfertimetoairport andtimetoboarding
  53. 53. Insight Tomanypeopleairportsarestressfulduetoa lackoforientationandtimepredictability-even moresowhenchangingplanes. Solution TheLufthansaTravelCompanionprovidesindoor mapsofairports,tellsthedurationtothegateand thewaitingtimeatthesecuritycheck.
  54. 54. Insight Intheplane,peopleoftenliketorelaxandsleep alittlebit.However,theydonotwanttomiss foodanddrinks. Solution Lufthansasupportswithasimpleprintedschedule oftheplannedservice,increasingtheirperception aspreciseandreliable.
  55. 55. Insight Fromthearrivalairporttravellersneedtofind theirwaytothecity,butoftendon’tknowhow. Solution TheLufthansaTravelCompanionshowsthe remainingtimetoyourappointmentandthe durationofthejourneythere,consideringvarious meansoftransportation.
  56. 56. Insight Exitingtheplaneisoftenthelastencounter withanairlineduringthejourney–amissed opportunity. Solution AftertheflightLufthansasendsatextmessage withtheexactmilesearnedfortheflight,thus providingapositivefinalexperience.
  57. 57. The easyJet Brand Experience
  58. 58. What does the brand easyJet stand for? Here is a TV commercial from 2013 .
  59. 59. enjoyment greatvalue foreveryone Anyairtripoffersthe opportunitytodo excitingthings,meet friendsandenjoyyour timewiththem. Brand Values User Insight
  60. 60. The easyJet experience journey Preparation At Airport AftermathIn Plane Searching & Booking Preparation Check-In Trip to airport At airport Counter Security Waiting at gate Boarding Way to plane Entering the plane Seating Settling-in During flight: – Employees – Service – Food – Activities – Entertainment System – Physical stress Exiting Arrival at airport Baggage claim Transfer to city Arrival at destination The aftermath orange: Steps where easyJet can best play out its brand values
  61. 61. Insight Fortheirweekendgetaways,peopleareoften flexiblewiththedatebuthaveafixedbudget. Also,itismoreaboutactivitiesandweather thanaspecificdestination. Solution easyJetprovidestravellerswiththeTripAlert,a toolthatalertsuserswhenaflightmatches definedcriteria.
  62. 62. Insight Travelisaboutthethingsyoudoatthe destination:meetingpeopleanddoinggreat stuff.Theplanningisatleasthalfthefun. Solution TheeasyJetTripPlannerhelpstoconnectwith friendsandcompileaselectionofplacesand activitiesintraveldestinations.
  63. 63. Insight EveryoneknowsthattravellingwitheasyJetcan beaverytightexperience. Solution easyJetbringsthefunintotravelling:Inalotteryon everyflighteasyJetgivesawayunsoldXLseatstoa happywinner.
  64. 64. Insight Whenfinallyintheplanepeoplefindthetimeto planandpreparefortheirtripahead. Solution ThepreviouslygatheredactivitiesintheeasyJet TripPlanercanintheofflinemodebearranged intoaschedule,supportingdetailedtripplanning.
  65. 65. Insight Alongtripcanbeveryboring,andeasyJetdoes notprovideaninflightentertainmentsystem. Solution easyJetprovidespassengersa„bringyourown device“entertainmentsystem: Forafeweuros moviescanbewatchedonyourprivatepaddevice connectedtotheeasyJetsystem.
  66. 66. Insight Usuallyflightsendveryabrupt,withouta memorableexperiencefromtheairline lingeringon. Solution TogetherwithpromotionalpartnerseasyJet provideshelpful,locationspecificgive-awaysupon exitingtheaircraft.
  67. 67. VATTER & JORDAN Summary and Conclusion
  68. 68. Step 1: Brand Experience Design – Research: Whichneedsariseduringproductorservice usage?Wherearepain&wowpoints? Whatdoesyourclient’sbrandstandfor?
  69. 69. Step 2: Brand Experience Design – Matching: Wherecanthe experience,when dealingwiththe brand,beimproved soitisbeneficialfor customers? Create value for user Howcanthese improvementsbe manifestationsof whatthebrand standsfor? Create value for brand Brand Experience
  70. 70. manifestingthebrand through/inencounters helpingbuildingbrand preference strengtheningthebusiness valueinsteadofmessages, deliveringonthepromise helpingbuildingloyaltyand recommendation strengtheningthebusiness contemporary marketing balancing out user and brand needs Brand Experience
  71. 71. The Experience is the message Howabrandactshasmoreimpactthanwhatitsays. OuruniqueapproachofBrand Experience Design providescompellingandusefulmomentsoftruth thatbothdelightcustomersandstrengthen business. Weofferto helpdeveloping any service brandthat needstodifferentiateanddeliveronitspromise.
  72. 72. VATTER & JORDAN Find more about us at www.brandexperiencedesign.net AllnototherwisemarkedimagescopyrightbyJordan&Vatter,iconsfromTheNoundProjectbyWilsonJoseph, Rediffusion,DiegoNaive,Lesvieuxgarçons,MuraliKrishna,Johanna,DaraUllrich,MelonnieManohar,NicolòBertoncin ChristianVatter, MarketingPsychologist& BrandExperienceConsultant cv@christianvatter.com @cvatterberlin www.linkedin.com/in/christianvatter MartinJordan, Service&BrandExperience Consultant martin@martinjordan.de @martin_jordan www.linkedin.com/in/martinjordan

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