Fly the Branded Skies


Agency: McCann Erickson

These are posts from Fly the Branded Skies about McCann Erickson.

Another year, another booze-fueled, scandal-plagued ego trip on the French riviera. If that sounds harsh, perhaps it is. It’s easier to forgive the excesses of Cannes when they’re accompanied by inspiring work. Unfortunately, this year was a bit of a dud.

Few airline industry campaigns were awarded, and many of those that did pick up Lions are retreads of previous years’ campaigns. Last year, airlines took eight Silver and 15 Bronze Lions, already a far cry from the heights of 2014. This year, it was just four Silver and five Bronze, with most of those in lesser categories.

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Widerøe launches Norwegian Meeting Services

If you’ve ever had to go to a meeting you didn’t want to go to — and for me, that’s most of them — the Norwegian regional carrier Widerøe has your back. This campaign from McCann Oslo has been live for a few months, but only recently has it been translated into awards-show-friendly English. It purports to be a campaign for Norwegian Meeting Services, a company that will send surrogates to meetings you don’t want to attend, anywhere Widerøe flies. In addition to a Web site where you can book an agent to go in your place, there’s also a fun series of webisodes.

Last year, airlines had a spectacular showing at the Cannes Lions, with a Grand Prix, six Golds, eight Silvers, and eight Bronzes. Inevitably, this year’s performance (eight Silver, 15 Bronze) was not quite so lofty. But there were some strong contenders, along with the usual mix of shocking omissions and perplexing victors that really make you wonder what the hell the judges were thinking.

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Flyby Wire:  November 24th, 2013

Fly By: 24 November 2013

Welcome to Flyby Wire, a weekly look at new advertising, identity, and brand experience work from around the airline industry. This week: look up! It’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s British Airways!   Read more

Flyby Wire:  June 30th, 2013

Welcome to the seventh issue of The Work This Week, a weekly roundup of new advertising, identity, and brand experience work from around the airline industry. This week, American Airlines gets animated, KLM makes a game out of the airline business, and the airline formerly known as Fiji Airways is now currently known as Fiji Airways.
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Flyby Wire:  June 23rd, 2013

Welcome to the sixth issue of The Work This Week, a weekly roundup of new advertising, identity, and brand experience work from around the airline industry. This week, it’s the annual Cannes issue! Who won? Who lost? Who got blackout drunk and passed out on la Croisette? It’s all here! Except for “who lost” and “who got drunk,” because we keep things classy.
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American Airlines launched its long-anticipated new identity today, replacing the Massimo Vignelli-designed livery it used unchanged for more than four decades. You can find more information and photographs at their launch Web site, or watch this behind-the-scenes video. In the interests of full disclosure, I work at American’s advertising agency, although I do not work on their account. Here’s the launch television spot developed by McCann New York:


Nonstop hoo

A Lufthansa owlThere’s a major shift going on at Germany’s largest airline, and it goes far beyond a new advertising agency.

This month, Lufthansa launched a new advertising campaign with the tagline “Nonstop you.” It’s the first new campaign from Kolle Rebbe, Hamburg, which won the business from McCann Berlin last year. And it seems to signal a very different Lufthansa.

The first television commercial, starring three adorable owls, is after the jump.

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Tropes: The Singing Jumbo Jet

Every kind of advertising has—well, let’s call them “conventions.” Airline advertising is no different. This is part of a series of posts on the clichés of airline advertising.

There’s an old joke that, when faced with creating advertising, the British crack a joke, the French get naked, and Americans sing.

If that introduction got your hopes up that this post would be full of jokes, or, even better, naked people, I’m sorry to disappoint. No, this post is about singing—something airlines used to do it a lot.

Today, a song in a commercial is far more likely to be licensed than commissioned. But there was a time when jingles were very popular, and no category used them more often than airlines. In fact, airlines may have elevated the jingle to its greatest heights. This one (by Leo Burnett / song credits) is liable to get stuck in your head:

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