Want to sell me a airline ticket? Start by figuring out where I might want to be!

If you’ve ever signed up for an airline’s email deals, then you’ve probably received something resembling this title:  “US Summer Flight Deals / Starting at $44 each way”. Sounds somewhat intriguing right? Just enough to click it open and give it a passing glance. I get emails like this almost everyday, from nearly every airline, yet not one has ever converted me to a sale. Why? Because none of them are offering anything remotely relevant.

Take a look at the picture I took of the email. You’ll notice flights from Lake Charles to Dallas? St. Louis to Washington? and on and on. But I live in Chicago and I don’t know anyone in Lake Charles or Dallas or Podunk, Oregon

In order for American Airlines to sell me this ticket, it would seem pretty logical to first, figure out where I’m coming from, and second, to figure out where I might want to go.

That’s the only ticket that has any chance of making the sale.

With the thousands of bits of information about us floating around cyberspace, let alone our credit card purchases, or any other data source, you would think an airline could figure out what airport each of us might fly out of and where we might be headed.  

Or, even better, forget expensive data gathering, why don’t they just take a Netflix approach and ask us where we might be interested in going this year. What are our favorite travel destinations? Family beaches or Exotic getaways? Then use our own preferences to offer relevant flight choices.

For me….California, check. Virginia, check. Lake Charles? no…cmon, really?

If they want to make a sale all they have to do is offer me a flight from where I am to where I might want to be.

Seems that simple to me. How about you?


About mjkurb

Michael is the Manager of Business Development at Element 79, a full-service advertising agency in Chicago, Illinois, and recent graduate of the Master's program at Northwestern University - Medill School - Integrated Marketing Communicaitons. Running two family businesses - learned to constantly listen and be aware of customer's needs and behaviors. Master's degree Northwestern University | Medill IMC - learned to better understand marketing insight, strategy and measurement. Rest of life - learned that working harder, smarter and faster than others is how you stay one step ahead.
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