BMI is seeking to restore its position as a business airline over the next year. The move is supported by the launch of a business class lounge at London Heathrow in June, which will be backed by a major ad campaign.
The airline will launch a series of marketing initiatives using the strapline, “Better for the business”. The first campaign, which breaks this week, will promote the brand’s fast check-in, including paperless boarding. It will be followed with a second burst of activity highlighting that passengers can access texts and emails while in the air.
BMI sales and marketing director Katherine Gershon says that “while we are aware of the economic mood, we offer the maximum number of destinations in the Middle East from Heathrow, and also flights to Moscow and South Africa, where the oil and gas business is booming”.
BMI aims to increase the number of business travellers from its current 50/50 ratio to about 60% business consumers by the end of the year.
Gershon adds: “We want to establish BMI as a business airline and also separate its identity from the sister airline Bmibaby”.
It has already started to bolster its business image with an outdoor campaign about its punctuality performance, which launched last week. At the same time, it has also launched a year-long campaign at Heathrow called “home of BMI”, which was developed by M&C Saatchi, with the media planning and buying by MPG.
BMI operates more than 1,800 flights every week from London Heathrow to 47 destinations across the UK, Europe, the Middle East and Africa.