Fly the Branded Skies



These are posts from Fly the Branded Skies on the topic of Features from November 2013.

Listen: Aeroflot: “Aeroflot”

In the 1960s, Aeroflot had something of a public relations problem. Although it was then the world’s largest airline — and a vital link for its vast motherland — its reputation for Soviet austerity was well-earned. On domestic routes, passengers endured indifferent service, chronically oversold flights, and uncomfortable aircraft.1 The situation was so dire that a 1960 column in Komsomolskaya Pravda, the official newspaper of the youth wing of the Communist Party, openly criticized the state-owned airline: “Unfortunately no genuine concern for passengers is felt in Aeroflot.”2

So Aeroflot did something distinctly un-Soviet: it turned increasingly to Western marketing techniques. Techniques that included a jingle sung by none other than Eduard Khil, Mr. Trololo himself.   Read more

  1. Flying in Soviet Can Be a Picnic,” The New York Times (6 August 1967). []
  2. Poor Air Service Scored in Soviet,” The New York Times (17 October 1960): 53. []