Campaign of the Week: American Airlines Attracts World’s Greatest Flyers

American Airlines recently launched an ad campaign that puts the focus on its flyers. The company’s print and video ads describe how the world’s greatest flyers act during flights, and then goes onto state that “the world’s greatest flyers fly American.” So how do actual flyers feel about this ad campaign? We asked 1,000 respondents on September 12-14 about their flying habits and their thoughts on different airlines, then tested one of the ads to see if it had any impact.

world's greatest flyers

Airline Passengers

In Ask Your Target Market’s latest survey, 7% of respondents said they last flew on an airline within the past month. 9% have done so in the past three months. 13% said they’ve flown within the past year. 5% said they last flew between one and two years ago. 36% last flew more than two years ago. And 30% said they don’t ever fly. Looking forward, 46% said that they are at least somewhat likely to fly on an airline at some point in the future.

41% of those who have flown at some point said they’ve flown with American Airlines. More respondents have flown with United and Delta. But American was ahead of Southwest, JetBlue and Spirit. Just 18% said that they fly with American regularly. Just Southwest had more regular flyers, with 23%.

World’s Greatest Flyers

Overall, 14% of respondents who are likely to take flights in the future said they would be certain or practically certain about choosing American Airlines the next time they fly. And 20% said it would be very probable. Of those who viewed the World’s Greatest Flyers ad, 15% said they would be certain or practically certain about choosing American for their next flight. And 21% said it would be very probable.

In addition, 69% of those who viewed the American Airlines ad said they consider themselves to be good flyers. Of those respondents, 19% said they would be certain or practically certain about choosing American for their next flight. And 21% said it would be very probable.

Brand Attributes

In general, respondents see American Airlines as a brand that is respectable, offers a quality experience, is made by a trustworthy company, offers luxury, and reflects the kind of person they are. Those who viewed the ad were slightly more likely to see American as a brand that offers a quality experience. But there was almost no change in terms of any of the other attributes.

Key Takeaways

In the World’s Greatest Flyers ads, American Airlines seems to be describing the type of passenger to whom it’s trying to appeal. In that way, the ad campaign seems fairly successful. Those who consider themselves to be good flyers were significantly more likely to plan on flying with American after viewing the ad. Those who viewed the ad were also more likely to see American as a brand that offers a quality experience. And if the airline can continue appealing to the world’s greatest flyers with this ad campaign, it could end up improving the experience even more through those flyers. So the company could potentially benefit from word of mouth or an improved reputation over time as well.

You can view the complete survey results in the widget below and be sure to click “Open Full Report” to take advantage of all the chart and filter options.

Photo Credit: American Airlines 787 by LoadedAaron under CC BY-ND 2.0

What do you want to know? If you need some consumer insights on a particular topic, let us know in the comments below and we’ll consider it for an upcoming survey post.

Results were collected on September 12-14 via AYTM’s online survey panel.

ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Anne Pilon
Anne Pilon brings 3 years experience to AYTM as a blogger and journalist. She has a degree in journalism and marketing communications from Columbia College in Chicago and enjoys writing about business, marketing, social media, and art.