Thought Leadership + Practical Advice

Changing things up to stand out from the crowd

Virgin Australia Brings On Wonderful

Nice. Is that the best we can hope for?

Have you seen the latest Virgin Australia ads, friends?

You know the one, it goes a little like this:  

A man in the airport check-in queue yawns. 

Someone on the loudspeaker says ‘Have a nice flight.’ 

Impossibly gorgeous Virgin attendant chimes in…

‘Nice. Is that the best we can hope for?’

‘Instead, let’s make it wonderful.’

‘Kiss ‘nice’ goodbye.’ 

‘And have a wonderful flight.’ 

Kiss ‘nice’ goodbye. And have a wonderful flight.

Changing things up to stand out from the crowd

We fly with Virgin a lot. We love Virgin. Ever since Richard Branson bought Sueanne a drink, it’s been a long-term love affair. 

But flying is becoming a little meh, wouldn’t you say? Even though we’re all excited to be back on flights again, going places + seeing people (hooray!), there’s still something a little ordinary in how we get around. Not to mention the continuing hassles with staffing, baggage, flight delays + the like (don’t get us started, we’ve been flying around the country all year!).

Changing up their marketing + comms

But Virgin is changing things up a bit when it comes to their comms. Addressing this ‘meh’ness head on, they’re pointing out those elephants in the room… 

Like the fact that it CAN be boring.

That NICE is really not that great. 

That sitting in the middle seat IS NOT FUN (have you seen their middle seat lottery campaign? Pretty cool!).

That it’s hard to differentiate yourself as an airline + take an experience from nice to wonderful. 

It’s hard to differentiate yourself as an airline + take the experience from nice to wonderful.

Changing up their product development

They’ve done some cool stuff with their product offerings to improve the customer experience too, like the ability to pool your Velocity Points + status credits with family, exclusive discounts + rewards with their Business Flyer status + yes, their Middle Seat Lottery where you can win a prize just for sitting in the middle (which everyone hates!). 

Changing up the view from product to experience

We love the way Virgin has taken the customer view in this campaign. They could have taken the typical business view – selling their features + benefits (yawn) or doing a price-based promotion, but they didn’t. They’ve gone for the experiential angle – how it would FEEL for the customer to fly with them. The message? ‘You want nice, go to our competitors. We only do wonderful’. Love it. 

Examples of Virgin's latest comms campaign.

Changing things up: three key learnings from Virgin

There’s three clever things Virgin has done in these campaigns to differentiate themselves, bring their brand to life + address customer pain points, head on.

1. Redefine the perception of their experience (in this case, flying)

2. Offer an up-side to a product customers traditionally hate (in this case, the middle seat)

3. Live + breathe their brand, right down to the tone + cheekiness of the campaign. 

They’re submliminal, but intentional. We love them!

Changing up your own marketing, product development + customer experience

It’s these clever little things that help differentiate you from your competitors. Virgin can’t change the meh-ness of catching a flight, true, but they sure can make it more enjoyable + more rewarding for their customers. 

Clever Virgin! 

So ask yourself this question, right now…

What can I do in my business to bring the wonderful for my customers, today?

Think about it this way…

What do customers find irritating about using a product or service like yours? What problems could you solve for them? What elephants in the room can you call out + own (customers love this!)?

It doesn’t have to be huge or expensive – just take a look at your customer feedback or your reviews online to find what they love – + don’t love – (even sneak a peak at your competitors’ reviews – there’s some gold dust there!) to get some ideas of how you can go from ‘nice’ to ‘wonderful’.

Check out our latest social media post about our experience + drop us a line there, if you have a flying story you’d like to share – be it ‘meh’, good, or wonderful… or something you’re doing in your own business, to bring the wonderful. We’d love to hear.

Til next time friends, thanks for reading.

Peter + Sueanne

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