What are people willing to do for a free flight upgrade?
If Virgin Atlantic’s new social media campaign is any indication, the answer is a mix of weird, wonderful, and thoughtful offers. Inspired by customers’ frequent attempts at getting a free upgrade, the airline has launched the #BestRequest campaign in which customers who have a flight booked are eligible to get moved up to Premium Economy or First Class.
Feeling inventive? People go to great lengths for an upgrade, what would you try? #BestRequest http://t.co/SCnDpaOtfU pic.twitter.com/sSQMtyrafG
— Virgin Atlantic (@VirginAtlantic) August 11, 2015
Customers have to enter by August 31st, and entries can be submitted across Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Entries will be judged by how creative and entertaining they are. Social influence and engagement on contest entries will also factor in.
For inspiration in preparing their entry, customers can also look at some of the crazy requests Virgin Atlantic employees have experienced over the years.
So, what do the entries look like? Check them out for yourself!
Free Swimming Lessons
@VirginAtlantic My #BestRequest is I’ll give you a free swim lesson…in my speedos haha ??? (obviously not onboard!) pic.twitter.com/zRBOE9y8PM — Tom Haffield (@ThomasHaffield) August 4, 2015
My #BestRequest is me and my other half will wear “Free Hugs” t-shirts for the whole time we were away. @VirginAtlantic #PassingOnTheLove
— Sarah McIntosh 🙂 (@Toshska) August 12, 2015
@VirginAtlantic Because the boyfriend says he will propose if we are upper class, then celebrate with champagne at ‘the bar’ #BestRequest ✈️ — Marie Blake (@RealMarieBlake) August 11, 2015
Terrible Fears and Allergies
@VirginAtlantic #bestrequest I need to be up-graded because I’m dextramophobic. I have a fear of turning right.
— John Murphy (@Hasthisonegone) August 5, 2015
@VirginAtlantic I am allergic to everything but champagne, comfy beds, five star service & inseat power #BestRequest pic.twitter.com/SdcLuWhWqU — Lucy Richards (@LucyLRichards) August 7, 2015
Free Baked Goods
@VirginAtlantic not joking about the cake. It’ll be homemade too, perhaps like this one! #bestrequest for an upgrade pic.twitter.com/vgo09buTAc
— Lucy R (@acrackinthesky_) August 5, 2015
An Adorable Dog
@VirginAtlantic @garymfc Will trade #PoppyTheDog for me and my #husbandtobe for a honeymoon upgrade #bestrequest pic.twitter.com/bYdZi4g9Ii — hayley edwards (@thatgirlh) August 6, 2015
What makes this campaign great is how it takes customer insights and translates them into a fun experience. The best campaigns come from knowing your customers and creating a meaningful experience for them—yes, even if that experience is playfully calling out their cheekiness in trying to score free upgrades!
There’s always that “what if” of getting upgraded when you fly. Why not use social media to get fans more involved and engaged leading into an upcoming flight? Although the campaign entry phase ends at the end of August, this is the type of initiative that could easily be run throughout the year.
As a frequent Virgin Atlantic flyer with an upcoming flight in late August, I also couldn’t resist getting in on the fun. Fingers crossed!
@VirginAtlantic Flying soon for a wedding & I introduced the couple. I’ll put my wingwoman skills to use at the 1st class bar! #BestRequest
— Jessica Gioglio (@savvybostonian) August 12, 2015
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