On Monday, Canadian airline WestJet released a Christmas-themed video that quickly went viral. Some observers referred to it as a sweet gesture, while others saw it as a public relations stunt. Either way, many passengers on the airline’s flights had their holiday wishes granted.
At airports in Toronto and Hamilton, Ontario, WestJet set up a live Santa-cam for passengers en route to Calgary, Alberta. As customers asked Santa what they wanted, a team of employees at their destination scrambled to collect the items that ranged from socks and underwear to a big-screen television. The festively-wrapped gifts were waiting for passengers when they arrived in the baggage claim area.
Lucky passengers, weren’t the only ones who benefited from the holiday gifts. WestJest may have been the biggest winner of all, as its video was watched over one million times on YouTube in just one day.
Although WestJet would not disclose how much it spent to set up the 18 hidden cameras at the Calgary airport and purchase the gifts, one can assume that the expense is significantly less than it would have been for a traditional television campaign. This type of online marketing is most successful when people share the content with family and friends.
“In a social media environment, the sharing of it almost becomes the point itself: ‘Look what this company did, I find it engaging, I want to tell you about it,'” said Richard Bartrem, WestJet’s vice-president of communications to Toronto’s The Globe and Mail newspaper. “It goes exponentially from there. It’s very alluring to marketers to say how can I engage in that?”
As evidenced by the WestJet video, consumers respond to emotional storytelling. To improve your business’ online presence, consider working with an internet marketing company such as Key Media Solutions. Our video ads are effective with click-through rates significantly higher than traditional banner ads.