Just received an email from Spanair that takes an interesting approach to marketing, but unfortunately it is only done in a half hearted manner rather than really putting the boots in. If you are going to attack Ryanair, then you have to do it with a bit of flair, as matching brashness with timidity rarely (if ever) yields positive results.
Spanair is in a very tough competitive position in the Spanish market given the flag carrier Iberia dominates business travel and the profitable Latin American routes, LCCs Click Air and Vueling have just been given the OK to merge, and LCCs like Ryanair and EasyJet dominate a lot of the leisure routes to and from Spain.
So Spanair have decided to emphasise that they are a “full service” carrier. The email bullet points roughly translated are:
- Low price guarantee
- No optional extras pre-selected
- N/A (special govt discount for remote communities)
- No charge for seat selection
- No charge to pay by credit card
- No charge to board the plane
- No extra charge for checked-in baggage
I think this type of marketing approach properly executed for an airline could work, as some of the charges Ryanair have invented are amazing. For example, last time I looked there was a charge to check-in at the airport, but internet check-in was only available to adults travelling with no check-in luggage. But full credit to them if customers wear it, and all indications so far are that they will. If Spanair really want to differentiate themselves from the LCCs, maybe they’ll have to try some marketing tactics that will get them a bit more notice.