Airline Design instigates Sustainable Competitive Advantage

09.03.2010 http://www.dotkite.eu/wp-content/uploads/2010/03/Velvet-Airlines-Dot-Kite.jpg

In the past, people were excited about flying. Airplanes were designed with exclusivity in mind. There were bars and lounges in the airplane, golden cutlery, and the travelers were served by a select few who could proudly call themselves air hosts. Nowadays, airline companies lack in giving such experiences to their customers, even their most loyal who get certain perks, but not the best service.

Below, we discuss the phenomenon of proper, high quality design helping airline companies get a sustainable competitive advantage with a clear case proving this.

The case concerns Virgin Atlantic. This airline company saw their chance to increase their market share when they invested in design as other companies were holding back on all expenses during the previous recession. They gained a substantial part of the market when the economy started to pick up again and have held onto their piece of the pie.
For airline companies, the Total Consumer Experience (TCE) means designing everything including among others:

  • Service before, during, and after flights
  • Branding and Strategic Communication
  • Branding Applications (ground applications and inflight applications
  • Online Experience (Website design and Online Social Media Management)
  • Crew uniform and office corporate clothing
  • Aircraft Livery
  • Aircraft seating plan graphics

There are countless more examples, but the latter especially helps form the public image of the airline. This will get people excited about flying again, like they were when flying was a pure luxury. Accordingly, instead of fighting for customers, customers will be fighting for you.

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- related post How airlines can survive the crisis with great design
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