Inspirational Box

Eurowings’s Lesson in Publicity Boost

How Did German Airliner Manage to Have Everyone in Bosnia and Herzegovina to Talk About It for Weeks?


Dušan Mladenović, spreading good vibes from the Balkans

25th of October2017

There is no such a thing as a bad publicity. People and public talk about you and your brand is getting momentum. Positive or negative, it is more of a philosophical question. First step is to conveniently trigger, manage and steer it and God forbid – to control the damage. Publicity boost? Far away from simple and ad-hoc sporadic activity which are prone to Balkan enterprises. What could we learn from very recent school alike lecture fully dedicated to publicity? 3Es (Encourage, Engage and Empower) are the wholly grail of modern online habitat.

Still having your doubts? Hol’ my beer. 🙂

Eurowings A320 with a crew

Source: Eurowings

As a teaser picture above would suggest you I am talking about Eurowings and their recent campaign “Vote and Fly”. In a nutshell, they literally used public (who shared its opinion by voting) in order to decide what will be the destination they are about to start next summer season. People were posting their vote online for two weeks. Top three got into the big final. Final online voting for one hour and we have got the winner – City of Mostar. Bam – done.

Not even close.

Hence, one does not have to be a business guru to realize that normally things do not roll that smoothly in reality – especially in business so penetrated, expensive and challenging, as aviation indeed is. So, what’s the catch?

Marketing is not exclusively about selling or developing messages, exploring markets, building campaigns, triggering publicity, word of mouth etc. It became an art and craftsmanship, especially in digital habitat we all so adore these days. This is where our boy Eurowings effectively jumped in. Actually, marketing agency or department which triggered this story on its behalf.

By simply sticking to the 3Es concept Eurowings managed to steer great majority of BH public to chat and spread rumours about their eventual incoming, on their behalf. This is not applicable only for Mostar, but for the purpose of this article let’s stick to this Herzegovinian pearl. Let’s unwrap the magic behind in three steps.

1. Firstly, by launching the campaign in such a form Eurowings strongly encouraged the public to participate. This has been further reinforced by offering free of charge tickets for the new destination. The reason good enough if you ask me. Possibility to win tickets for a destination you would like Eurowings to fly, and you can contribute? You already see a minor emotion outburst behind.

2. The second step was to engage public. This is not that easy as it sounds. Very careful planning must be set in place behind. The campaign took shape of a voting contest. One would say – there is no easier way to go. Those ones probably have no clue about engagement of people online nowadays. It’s harder than ever to push someone to click or do something. People are overwhelmed and bombarded with all sort of trash online. Go figure out how to catch someone’s attention.

3. You know that feeling that you think you can change something, that your vote counts, that company takes care of your will etc. To cut it here, those might be the wet dreams of rooky students of political science. Business. Business does not take this crap real. But, marketers push you this story on a plate as it is really the ultimately true. Eurowings mastered it, I must admit. Several hundreds of thousands of individuals felt truly empowered. Countless impressions online. This is the way to go.

Eurowings A320 in Special FC Dortmund Livery

But, Eurowings conveniently skipped to mentioning that such a route planning is taking part months and years in advance. Not to mention practicalities like political risks, economic characteristics of destinations, tremendous amounts of resources of the different kind needed etc. It is simply too easy to be true.

Why is this the publicity lecture?

Simply because numerous media have been reporting and were constantly heating up the atmosphere around the “You vote, we fly” campaign. There was no single day without someone writing or posting about it. Disclaimer: Text 1; Text 2; Text 3; Text 4; Text 5; Text 6; Text 7; Text 8; Text 9; Text 10, Text 11 etc. Tens of thematic articles.

Next question: Have Eurowings paid for any of those articles to be published?

You can guess, and you are right. Not a single euro cent. Eurowings threw away a bone (in form of a sweet empathically wrapped contest) hoping that many will turn on. It was right – online public and communities heated up, the story went viral and Eurowings got several millions of euros of public relation value with maybe few hundred euros worth of an investment. Still skeptical? Use Google Trends to realize the online country-wise coverage. Now we talk business.

And yes, again you are right. All of us that voted, helped them to succeed and carry out their side of the story. We literally were fire briquettes enhancing the flame. This ever-expanding flame is Eurowings’ reputation, image, and brand itself. Rest assured that  they are doing extraordinaly good.

However, this should be a brief effective and cutting-edge lesson on how to make others work for you. Moreover, a remarkable spin that made all of us Eurowings ambassador’s, although the huge majority of us never flew them. This is what I call ingenious.



About the author:   

Dušan Mladenović

PhD Student, Lecturer and Researcher at Faculty of Economics and Administration, Masaryk University |

CMO and Founder @DigiMark

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