aaaaaaaSafety and entertainment: 5 tips learned from Virgin America

Virgin America Safety Instructions

The day before yesterday Virgin America released a new video, designed not only to become the new trendy viral one. It’s about airline safety instructions, for the first time set entirely to music and dance. This video will feature on all Virgin America flights by November. Stop considering for a moment who’s sir Richard Branson. Ok, maybe with a great budget for gathering a Hollywood production team everyone could make a similar operation. However, I’d like to focus on the concept, trying to imagine what was inside Virgin America’s marketing department.

I’ve found 5 tips for my everyday work I want to share with you:

1 / Speaking about delicate topics doesn’t mean you can’t be entertaining. We know entertainment is a way to grab people’s attention in advertising, but it’s not so simple to find some campaigns touching upon difficult situations (e.g. your safety on a plane) in a funny and fascinating way.

2 / It’s not a matter of words, copywriter. Sometimes we lose so much time looking for some unusual words and we forget creating the right contexts for them. In this case, FAA-mandated safety instructions remained the same, but the message was very different.

3 / Your client must listen closely what you want to say. We’re becoming increasingly kind and polite with our customers, leaving always their sacred freedom of choice. Let’s tell the truth: if someone paid for your service, you’ve right to get that someone’s attention, nicely or extremely. Probably, you need only 5 minutes, like Virgin America and other airline companies.

4 / Creativity is your right bridge between needs and opportunities. I think that every airline company would avoid in-flight safety instructions if it’d be possible. But it’s a necessity and you’ve to face it, not achieving your assignments as fast as you can (you’re thinking at the last hostess during last flight, isn’t it?). Better with a creative approach.

5 / Your next opportunity starts from your last satisfied need. Virgin America wanted to change its passengers experience while listening to the emergency information, for sure. More, Virgin America wanted to play a first-mover role in using new styles to communicate. When you identify a satisfying solution for your needs, it (magically) appears a new opportunity for your business. Enjoy Safety Dance Battle, an Instagram contest to engage Virgin fans in participating to the next hottest in-flight safety video.

Even if I’m not a fan of musical and TV series, I think there’s a great strategy inside this communication project. Safety video instructions are becoming a new format where it’s possible to share brand values mixed with a specific content: Air New Zealand has already collected several videos with this idea. What do you think about it?