Opinion split over BA’s third-party advertising

British Airways’ decision to place third-party advertising on its website and boarding passes could undermine the brand, according to Marketingweek.co.uk’s latest online poll.

British Airways: Income concerns

The poll was split with 51% agreeing with the statement that the airline “risks damaging its brand perception” by carrying such third-party ads. However, 49% of respondents stated the airline was unlikely to face a backlash due to the initiative.

BA is seeking to develop new income streams as passenger numbers and revenues fall in the face of the global economic downturn. The airline reported a pre-tax loss of £148m in its latest results for the three months to June.

As well as exploring revenue generation, BA has axed meals on short haul flights and asked staff to take unpaid leave.

A spokesman for easyJet said it had no plans to advertise on its boarding passes and added: “BA claims to be a premium service, but there seems to be little difference between it and a low-cost carrier.”

BA is keen to stress that it is only looking to carry ads from brands that have an affinity with its business passengers.

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