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S7 Airlines launches major advertising campaign


April 17 saw the start of an advertising campaign backing the launch of Sibir Airlines’ new brand, S7 Airlines. The campaign will have two stages: from April 17 — June 15, and from September 1 to October 30. S7 Airlines commercials will be shown on the following major television channels: Perviy Kanal, NTV, STS, TNT, Ren-TV, Sport, and DTV. Besides the video clips, a series of adverts for outdoor advertising and print media were designed. All 10 images are aimed at different target groups and will be placed both in general publications and ones devoted to travel such as National Geographic, Vokrug Sveta, and Karavan Istoriy. Outdoor advertisements are to be placed in more than 20 regional cities. Such mass coverage will allow the airline to inform its potential customers about its changeover to its bright new image.

The communications strategy was developed by the English design and advertising group No One, a WPP company. Special attention was paid to the elaboration of the creative concept, and to the choice of the director, director of photography and filming location. Joe Roman is one of the top ten advertising directors in the world, and one of the leading specialists in use of slow-motion techniques. The summer shots were taken in New Zealand, and the winter ones in the Italian Alps, making it possible for the commercials to feature attractive urban and natural scenery.”

The key concept in the advertising campaign is the phrase “Freedom to Choose”, which encapsulates the airline’s strategy and brand value. S7 Airlines offers its passengers freedom in all its forms and the right to do what they want —to travel, to work, to holiday, to make independent decisions, etc. The “Freedom to Choose” idea is an attempt to connect with the audience on the emotional level; it is an appeal to people’s hearts. All the people shown in the campaign are shown making a jump that turns into a flight and conveys a feeling of joy, love, happiness, friendship and freedom —the reasons people want to travel.

Konstantin Koshman, S7’s director of marketing and regional development, has this to say about the new campaign: “S7 Airlines’ advertising campaign is the result of almost a year’s work, from the moment No One was chosen, to the clip editing and the layout creation. We have tried to focus on and present to our customers S7 Airlines’ values, all the very best about us, as elaborated by our partner, the branding agency Landor. We are putting our new image on public trial and to suggest to our passengers that we are offering them not just a flight from one point to another, but an atmosphere of travel and positive emotions.

The second important aspect is the desire to show that S7 Airlines is first and foremost customer-oriented. We are brightening up not just on the outside, but on the inside too, in our very approach to the customer, and are doing everything to become a more open, accessible and benevolent airline.”

According to Simon Manchipp, founder and creative director of No One, “S7 Airlines gives people the freedom to do what that want, where they want, and when they want. The process of creating the advertisement involved hundreds of people, respected and well-known in their field, united in the aim of creating a world-class advertisement in support of S7 Airlines’ new image. The theme “Freedom to Choose” has huge potential. It is a fundamental idea, a genuine breath of fresh air in the Russian market. We are incredibly proud of this work and the fact that we have given a Russian campaign a truly international flavor. It is exciting to feel part of S7 Airlines’ future success.”

Since March 2006, Sibir Airlines has operated under the trade name S7 Airlines. Russia’s largest domestic carrier, and its second-largest carrier overall, it is one of the world’s top 50 airlines in terms of domestic traffic. In 2005, the airline made more than 32,000 flights and carried more than 4,200,000 passengers.