British Airways Reclaims Motto in First Global Campaign in 11 Years [Video]

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Following an online teaser campaign that included a 20-second trailer and Facebook outreach, British Airways today revealed its new global campaign, with ads that will begin appearing in the US on TV, in newspapers and online next week.

The main spot, above, showcases the airline’s heritage and highlights the characteristics that make the British Airways special, including dedication to flying and decades of flying know-how and innovation, along with thoughtful service and British style.

According to the Guardian, seven additional spots will feature 13 BA employees, while one of the print ads “features a baby in a BA jacket, to highlight the fact that staff are trained to deliver babies if necessary, while another features a human heart to show that the airline carries precious cargo such as donor organs.”[more]

The Guardian also reports that the campaign, launching first in the UK and US before rolling out to other regions in the fourth quarter, “comes months after BA finally ended an 18-month dispute with cabin crew which saw 22 days of strikes costing £150m.”

The estimated £20m brand campaign also honors the airline’s 92-year heritage by reclaiming its historic tagline, ‘To Fly. To Serve.’ Indeed, the Telegraph observes that the airline that “once stripped the Union Jack from its tailfin is now returning to its imperial heritage.”

Beyond the brand advertising, the airline has committed to spend more than £5 billion on customer products and services over the next five years; it’s also looking to upgrade its Boeing 747 fleet. 

More details in the press release, below.

LONDON – British Airways is launching its biggest brand advertising campaign for a decade to coincide with a five-year program of investment for the benefit of customers.

The campaign, on TV, in newspapers and online, showcases the airline’s heritage and highlights the characteristics that make British Airways special: decades of flying know-how, thoughtful service and British style.

By placing new emphasis on its historic motto, “To Fly. To Serve.” , the airline is restating its resolve to put the customer at the heart of everything it does.  Beyond the brand advertising, the airline has committed to spend more than £5 billion on customer products and services over the next five years. 

The investment will see British Airways customers benefiting from new aircraft, new World Traveller and World Traveller Plus cabins, a revamped First class, significant improvements at Gatwick and better lounges around the airline’s network.

Funds will also be allocated to improved catering and new technologies to make the travel experience more comfortable and convenient for customers on the ground and in the air.

Keith Williams, British Airways’ chief executive, said: “The motto ‘To Fly. To Serve.’ is part of the DNA of British Airways.  It is on our coat of arms, and it is worn in crew uniforms.  And it has real meaning and resonance for today.  It encapsulates our expertise for flying and our commitment to customer service. It describes our purpose.”

Frank van der Post, British Airways’ managing director, brands and customer experience, said: “This campaign has real substance.  Not only are we investing in tangible improvements to the customer experience, earlier this year we launched an internal program to engage with our staff.  We’re working with our cabin crew, listening to their views and giving them tools, such as iPads, to enable them to deliver even better service.

“The technology teams are working to deliver more customer-friendly improvements to our website and apps.  The airport team is developing more services for premium customers.  The catering team is revamping the menus and the wines.  All these changes are being delivered now and we have even more plans for the future.  The whole airline is delivering on our promise, ‘To Fly. To Serve.’”

More spots in the campaign, including the making of the commercial at top:

A look at BA people and planes that have been at the forefront of aviation for the last 90 years, including the Airco de Havilland DH.9*, de Havilland 86* DC-3, VC-10, Boeing 747 and the iconic Concorde:

A look at the fashions in the campaign:

BA’s head of brand engagement, Abi Comber, discusses the ‘To Fly. To Serve’ motto:

Jag Sihra, Design Manager at British Airways, talks about BA uniforms by fashion designers over the years, including Hardy Amies, Roland Klein and Julien MacDonald:

And here’s a 90-second version of the primary spot:

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