SPIRIT AIRLINES. “CHEAP” ALL THE WAY

As I was watching an ABC Nightline segment on Spirit Airlines, I thought that, had I been on the look for a better case of consistent branding I wouldn’t have found it. In their quest to reduce costs, they even got to the point of eliminating the receptionist in their corporate headquarters. And it doesn’t stop there. They turned off 1/3 of the lights in the building and each employee has to clean up his/her own desk or cubicle. All this effort amounts to approximately $0,20 per ticket. Consistent? No doubt about it! Relevant? Yes! Competitive? Yes! Now, in your opinion, is this Branding or Branding Mumbo Jumbo???

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May 7th, 2009 18 Comments Airline Branding / Branding

  1. Mauricio

    In my opinion this is straight up branding!
    Spirit Airlines is about cheap, inexpensive and uncomplicated traveling. You can not have many bags, you have to pay for your sodas/snacks and etc.
    To keep consistency, the corporation needs to be able to implement these “money saving” practices from within and they have been doing so by turning off lights and cleaning after themselves.
    Branding starts from within and if the employees do not practice the brand’s identity of being “cheap and inexpensive” but rather spend millions on unnecessary.

    May 11th, 2009 //
  2. Guess

    I agree with Mauricio 100% branding is ANYTHING a company does and its reflection on how it is perceived…If I cant have a glass of water then the employees have to work in the dark. This does leave you wondering whats next…

    May 11th, 2009 //
  3. ftpmumbojumbo

    Food for thought: Jet Blue is inexpensive and desired by the consumer. Southwestern is inexpensive and admired by the trade. Spirit is cheap and successful. Is that branding or branding MumboJumbo.

    Yet I agree with Mauricio, if you want to be perceived as cheap the right move is to start for being cheap at your headquarters.

    May 12th, 2009 //
  4. Joana

    Jet Blue and Southwest are both inexpensive airlines admired by consumers and trade, but Spirit Air is the only airline I know of that has tickets as low as $1.00 – now, that is CHEAP!
    In addition, it is not about employees working in the dark, but usually these large corporations waste a lot of resources and money on unnecessary things. Why do you need to have the entire building lit up like a xmas tree when you are not using every light in the building? And why do we need to have a team of cleaning people to dust your desk if we are all grown up and can look after ourselves?

    Back to Southwest – they are perceived as fun, inexpensive and convenient – and they do so from inside. Southwest is the easiest airline to fly in my opinion – simple website, friendly operators (no machines, robots or extensive menus), quick and painless boarding and very friendly staff on the airplanes. Southwest is fun and friendly all from within!

    May 12th, 2009 //
  5. ftpmumbojumbo

    Joanna, I am not criticizing Spirit, on the contrary I believe they are very consistent in their marketing and their policies and that is what branding is all about. The question would be if there is equity in being perceived as cheap?

    May 14th, 2009 //
  6. FIJI

    So I think we all agree that it is consistent branding. Now I have a new question to pose – Is it better to be branding mumbo jumbo or do turn your company in the wrong consistent branding direction? Let me explain – is it better for Spirit to just be cheap flights where you have to pay for luggage and pay for your drinks (they just get your from point A to B) or should they be the airline branded as CHEAP and make their employees clean their desks?

    It seems to me that their offices will be dirty leading to their employees being unhappy, leading to the overall demise of the company!

    Should Spirit just drop the cheapness and be like Easy Jet and Ryan Air in Europe where you don’t even have assigned seats cause the flights cost $22 – They flights are always full and business is good.

    Thoughts?

    May 14th, 2009 //
  7. REX

    No doubt the Spirit toke a ‘cheaper route … in branding’. And off course is branding, but just cheap. It is the easy way of marketing where you have to ‘do anything’ by osmosis. Sure is consistent, but what kind of ‘consistency’ is it?.
    To build a healthy brand, rather than budget, it requires ingenuity and vision, so with a tips of grains of sand, constantly and in the right direction always, will build the brand in the correct way.
    The crisis is finally a chance. Don´t you think that?
    Pd: My english is no very good looking (by Celia…)

    May 14th, 2009 //
  8. ftpmumbojumbo

    Hi Rex, my English is also “Celia’s Style”. I might even write a note about her. I have to disagree with you. This is not unhealthy branding. It might not be aspirational, but it is branding after all.

    May 15th, 2009 //
  9. Melodylab

    If you go to the “About” section of Spirit Air, the first thing you learn is the Ultra Low Cost Carrier acronym – ULCC. If you look at the keywords they want you to find them, you get “cheap tickets”, “cheap flights” “discount airfare”. So is it consistent with the ideology of the company (TOP DOWN approach) to minimize all costs? I think it’s an excellent example where the branding approach of providing lowest fares matches the internal corporate culture and ideology of minimizing expenses to reach that goal.

    Now, when are we going to talk about APPLE??? :)

    May 17th, 2009 //
  10. ftpmumbojumbo

    Apple is coming soon. It is such a lesson that it deserves the anticipation

    May 20th, 2009 //
  11. madrid cheap flights

    Really cool blog. I found it on yahoo. I am looking forward to read more posts.

    Can anybody tell me what?s the best hotel in Madrid for my honey moon? I going to married next month..

    Thank you

    May 27th, 2009 //
  12. ftpmumbojumbo

    LOL. I’m glad you run into my mumbojumbo on your way to Madrid. My one and only honeymoon was sooo… long ago that I am no longer qualified to help you find a romantic hotel, but Madrid is such a great destination that who cares for the hotel.

    May 28th, 2009 //
  13. petites annonces

    Thanks very much for taking your time to create this very useful infos .

    May 30th, 2009 //
  14. ftpmumbojumbo

    It is me who has to be thankful to people like you who are reading. Keep showing up and share your thoughts mon cher petites annonces

    June 2nd, 2009 //
  15. KrisBelucci

    Hi, cool post. I have been wondering about this topic,so thanks for writing.

    June 2nd, 2009 //
  16. ftpmumbojumbo

    Thanks for reading Kris, writing has no purpose if you have no readers :)

    Is there any other topic that might interest you?

    June 2nd, 2009 //
  17. CrisBetewsky

    You know, I don’t read blogs. But yours is really worth beeing read.

    July 6th, 2009 //
  18. ftpmumbojumbo

    Thank you Cris. Your words are very encouraging.

    July 6th, 2009 //

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