EasyJet is planning a major shift in advertising strategy away from price-driven offers to promoting its green credentials. It would be the first airline to focus on the environment rather than price.
A campaign highlighting EasyJet’s efficiency in reducing carbon emissions will break in the New Year. It will be developed through its agency Ogilvy & Mather. The change in strategy follows the publication of a report into the economic consequences of climate change, written by Sir Nicholas Stern. The report, which was launched last week, is expected to mark a turning point in consumer attitudes towards the environment. Industry experts say the European short-haul airline market is likely to face decline and that carriers should act now to reposition themselves as “the most environmentally friendly rather than the cheapest” to ensure survival.
Liz Tinlin, a board director at marketing consultancy Added Value, says: “Those [airlines] that survive will be the ones that cut out the grief, denial and anger at the necessary measures and reposition their brands and business models so that fuel efficiency replaces price as the main driver of sales.” A spokesman for EasyJet says: “There are obvious benefits to pushing our environmental credentials as part of our advertising. We’ll be breaking the first of our new advertising that focuses on green issues early next year. I see nobody else that is likely to beat us to it. Ryanair is still using ‘get out of your car and walk’ sort of language so we think we’ll be the first. Although it’s not a race, it’s a serious business.”
Meanwhile, the airline is launching a campaign on ATM:ad, the cash machine advertising network. The ads, which break this week, aim to highlight special flight deals from selected airports across the UK. It will run for two weeks on 171 ATMs in Newcastle, the East Midlands, Liverpool, Bristol and Belfast.