Air New Zealand listens to customers. Or do they?

Watch campaign clip on YouTube

A UK based Air New Zealand campaign highlights the attitude and friendliness of cabin crew as something uniquely kiwi.  The idea for the campaign was apparently inspired by a passenger’s tweet;


… but given that the tweeter is a London-based digital marketing consultant who’s own website has a page of  “10 reasons why you should engage your customers in an online conversation”

…I’ll let you be the judge of how genuine this is.

Customer blogs and tweets about your product can act as a great barometer of how your customers perceive your product or service.

With most airlines competing on price, this campaign shows Air New Zealand as being responsive to customer feedback, and focused on the in-flight passenger experience.

When you look at the dozens of touch-points involved in a travel experience; research, planning, booking, in-airport routines, transfers and accommodation details that sandwich the actual flight, it can almost dwarf the on-board component of the passenger experience. Especially for short flights.

An Airline I worked with in the UK carried out an ‘Experience evaluation’ seeing and measuring the entire process through a customer viewpoint; from the inspiration to take the trip, right through to uploading your photos when you’re home. By identifying which of the touch-points work well and which ones frustrate passengers, these airlines can identify ways to improve the passenger experience.

This ‘personality allowed’ campaign is aimed at long haul flights where the actual flight is likely to be the memorable aspect, hopefully blanking your memory of the queues at immigration and perhaps even something worth shouting, or tweeting about.

2 thoughts on “Air New Zealand listens to customers. Or do they?

  1. Simon Johnson

    Nice article Nick.

    If the amount of blog entries etc is anything to go by then there’s a move towards the ‘overall experience’ and away from single products or services.

    Do customers really value a good experience and what are they willing to pay for it? How can companies ‘really’ deliver this haloed experience?

    When things are cheap people are willing to put up with very poor service. Look at Ryanair; Their customer experience is appalling. Customers and staff are treated like cattle. However people still fly with them. What does that tell us? Maybe people don’t care that much about a good experience if it carries a high price tag. As UxCs are we just jumping on the latest buzz words without researching larger issues such as price and the competitive market?

    When it comes to delivering a good expeience so much of this vaulted experience is based on front-line staff being nice and responding intelligently to customers fluid demands. However, businesses consistently underpay staff and exclude them from the decision making process. This leads to high churn rates, the loss of intellectual capital, unmotivated staff, all of which conspires to deliver a poor customer experience.

    The only way that companies can deliver a consistently good external experience is to have a unified organisation of equals that internally respect all members. A healthy tree bears attractive fruit.

    In conclusion; We need to ascertain what price tag a good experience carries and what structural changes may be necessary to implement if this is to be anything more than a purely cosmetic gesture.

    Jesse James Garret gives a good talk on this overall experience:

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