I’ve long been a fan of Virgin Atlantic. From the early days as a scrappy, game changing, market disruptor (buzzword bingo anyone?), to the gradual maturation of a suave and sophisticated airline, bringing back the glamour to the airline industry from the golden era of passenger travel.
And key among that image projection, aside from the stellar service one gets aboard one of their flights, is their TV advertising campaign. Their most memorable advert, celebrating their 25th anniversary, still feels fresh and tongue-in-cheek, with an homage to the 1980’s.
Their 2011 campaign took inspiration from the often artistic James Bond opening credit sequences to dazzle customers with their take on British sophistication. Full of fun, glamour and rife with self-deprecating humour, it’s one of my favourites.
Not to be out-done by their parent, Virgin America got in on the act with an update of the safety demo shown to passengers before take-off. Part “Glee”, part “Got To Dance”, it again exhorts Virgin’s humourous side whilst keeping passengers engaged in the usual boring safety demo. Interestingly, Delta have also more recently rolled out something similar on their flights.
Their 2013 advert once again took inspiration from the movies. This time, it took the form of a Superhero “movie trailer”, which showed off the various skill-sets of their pilots, crew and cabin design team.
Two years later, they’ve launched their newest TV advert for 2015. This time round, it’s focused more on the business traveller. Inviting viewers on a high energy journey which follows a passenger on his way to pitch an idea.
Set to Depeche Mode’s ‘Personal Jesus’, the film is intended to capture the spirit and vision of Virgin Atlantic as THE airline for people who share a similar “can-do” mindset and inspire those who want to make their ideas happen, whatever those ideas might be.
English actor and award winner Andy Serkis, best known for his Lord of the Rings work, narrates the video.
As is usual for Virgins ads, this one is thick with humour, and shows off the various pre-flight perks Virgin are rightfully proud of. That being said, given the emphasis on the “perks”, it’s clear the audience it’s aimed at is the more discerning and affluent business traveller. That is, after all, where most airlines make their profits, and Virgin is no different……they just have a much better product.