ryanair report university

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Katrina Luder FMB3

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A detailed report into how Ryanair can adopt new strategies to help them to deal with the changing consumer.


Katrina Luder FMB3

ContentsIntroduction Contemporary Trends Competitors SWOT Customer Service Reccomendations Conclusion Bibliography pg 5-7 pg 9-15 pg 17-19 pg 21-23 pg25-31 pg 33-39 pg 41-43 pg 45-49

01In tro duction

Throughout this report, I will identify the current branding and marketing strategies for Ryanair and suggest what actions they may need to take to continue to be successful in the future. In order to do this, I will analyse trends that affect the travel industry both from the macro and micro environment both online and offline. Where technology is becoming more advanced, it is having an effect on the role of the consumer and they are quickly becoming in control of how a brand must behave. If brands such as Ryanair dont change with their consumers, they will only get left behind.

Ryanair offer a low cost, no frills approach to air travel to European destinations. With no added complimentary services to a flight, they use the selling of items on board such as food and drink as valuable income streams. The brand do not use travel agents so it does not have to pay agency commissions. Instead you book solely over the internet at the comfort of your own home.

02Contemp orary Trends

TechnologyThe significant rise of technology across the world is playing an increasing role in every aspect of peoples lives. Mintel reported that in 2011, 58% of 10-15 year olds in the UK owned a mobile smartphone, and 50% also had a computer in their own bedroom. With these figures being on the up rise for not just young people, but for adults alike, we find an increase in the amount of consumers dual screening, where they are accessing media from two or more devices. Where this is apparent, a single consumer can be reached by many different brands and media resources.

The digital revolution has in turn affected every single brand, product or service out there. It has changed the way consumers and a brand can interact with each other as well as changing the way that their services are offered. As the internet is now a travellers main source of information, inspiration and way of booking, the travel industry has altered perhaps more than any other. (WGSN, 2012). Googles Think Travel research report in 2011 surveyed 5,000 US travellers and found that 85% of leisure travellers used the internet as their primary research resource. I backed up this information with a personal survey, where 37% of people booked on the sight specific website, 23% used a travel search engine and 2% using Groupon. My results also showed that 0% of participants used an in-store travel agent. These statistics show just how much the travel experience has evolved in recent years. We used to be impressed with an inflight meal, however now passengers can access Wi-Fi, watch on demand TV and even use a smartphone to replace their travel agent, (Mashable, 2012). Although Ryanair are accessible over the internet as most brands wouldnt be able to survive if not, they havent managed to update and continuously keep up to date with the latest advancements. With many brands ensuring iPads and iTouches are available to their consumers in various destinations, including airports, to help them be more interactive and forward, Ryanair will soon fall far behind.

Social Media

Due to the advancements in technology, social media in particular has become hugely successful. Social media platforms have allowed retailers and brands to prolong the life of advertising and marketing campaigns. When brands choose traditional channels of advertising and marketing, which incur large costs, it tends to mean only purchasing said space for a set amount of time. (Drapers, 2012) However, social media invites the consumer to decide how much time they want to spend on the promotional content and the brand can let it run for as long as they see fit, assessing it against key performance indicators and targets. Social media is a good way for a brand to widen their database. The airline BMI in particular recently had a very successful social media campaign. Their goal of the campaign was to drive awareness to the newly created BMI pinterest account. They created destination boards with 9 images on each. Each week, they picked a number at random and whoever had repined that image was entered into a draw. The prize was a round-trip ticket from any BMI destination. (iMediaconnection, 2012). Word spread fast of this fantastic competition and the followers and buzz around the brand were increasing rapidly. They managed to successfully increase their brand database as well as showing themselves to be a rewarding company. However, many brands have also faced the negative qualities to social media. An online monitoring company, Brandwatch, found that 36% of consumers online who interact with a brand through social media, do so to complain, (Drapers, 2012). If a brands online pages are largely negative, then it may decrease consumer loyalty and reliability of the brand. Each brand must use any negativity as an opportunity to tackle the feedback head on. ASOS in particular is a brand who has managed to deal with both positive and negative feedback very well by introducing a feedback page entitled HereToHelp. They delegate members of staff to deal with consumers problems and ensure each complication is dealt with efficiently. Ryanair in particular incur a large amount of complaints and negative publicity. With pages such as We hate Ryanair being circulated. Ryanair often ignore their complaints as part of their marketing and communication strategy is to let the customers know that they are definitely low budget and this reflects in their service. Although they are currently still performing well, when the consumer begins to change in the future, they will see their lack of interaction in their approach to their customers begin to decrease their performance.

Macro EnvironmentIntelligent trend research applies to the travel industry just as much as it does to the textile and apparel industry as there are many behavioural or trends that change where people choose to travel. Throughout 2012, Britain became one of the most popular tourist destinations on the map due to a variety of different major events such as the Queens Jubilee and the Olympics. This impacts the travel industry as a whole hugely and brands must take into account these events to offer good packages, promotional material and services to these consumers, (WGSN, 2012).

From the FIFA World cup to the RIO carnival, airlines must open up new routes and hotels must expand to account for the high volumes of people. Travel destinations can also be heavily influenced by food. Michelin-tourism is now a very important factor in the travel sector as restaurants are suddenly able to pull tourists to a destination in their own right. Airlines must now take into consideration who the new star chef is and what destinations and culinary regions they are pulling people to. Art and Fashion are such large industries that are finding themselves influencing people every day into new paths and interests. Louis Vuitton have released a new campaign entitled Invitation to Travel. The aim of this campaign is to inspire people to explore and embrace the world. They have created their own travel guide to show their readers the worlds most precious destinations. With the travel market now having such a large luxury sector, there has become a need in the market for highbrow publications from such as this one.

03Com pet itors

British Airways began to see losses of more than 500 in 2010 as the recession pushed hard against their business. To turn the business around again, they hired top marketer Frank Van Der Post. After his showpiece marketing campaigns and major investment programme, he is now confident that British Airways can tackle the likes of Ryanair and easy Jet as they would like to offer a good quality service for a low price on short-haul routes. Ryanair themselves admit that they are not providing any customer experience and are instead there to get a passenger from A to B with no frills. However, with airline giants such as British Airways aiming to enter the budget market but with high quality service, they will surely begin to suffer. Todays customer is evolving into someone who lusts after good design, comfort and customer service and budget brands can no longer ignore this.

High Cost


British Airways

Low Quality


High Quality

Monarch Easy Jet Jet 2


Low Cost

This perceptual map clearly shows where Ryanair are placed in the market in relation to their consumers. They are the cheapest option airline and also sacrifice on quality. The large blue circle shows where there is a gap in the market. It is this gap that British Airways have noticed and are beginning to fill with their new offer range.


StrengthsBudget Fly over Europe Hand luggage- free Check in online- no hassle. Bag drop Provide in-flight services A lot of their flights are on time Let customer know exactly what they are paying for

WeaknessesUncomfortable Extra costs- luggage/booking fee etc Bombarded with inflight services Can only check in online- restrictive Charge extra is check in at airport Un attractive website I hate Ryanair website Controversy No seat allocation A lot of the airports Ryanair fly to our out of cities.

OpportunitiesMore consumers travelling Product extension e.g. Ryanair hotels Technological advances The guardian has a whole Ryanair page of news

ThreatsCompetition from other budget airlines Non budget airlines offering better service at affordable price Bad service The guardian has a whole Ryanair page of news. Opinions formed by consumers Easy jet is to introduce seat allocation.

The swot analysis clearly indicates that although the customers are fully aware of how Ryanair treat them and the policies that they undertake; with threats in the market such as new budget options with better quality combined with their constant bad publicity, they will begin to feel pressure and they must adopt a new approach for the future to keep up with competitors.

05Cus tomer Service

One aspect that Ryanair are not keeping up to date with is customer service. An interesting report by WGSN indicated exactly what priorities would be key for travellers beyond 2012. The key priorities were as follows: Authenticity Experience Privacy Personalised Service Absolute design These factors have been predicted since consumers were handed the power to create and tailor their own travel needs through the internet. There has been a power shift weighed in the consumers favour. Transumers are consumers driven by experiences instead of the fixed entertainment, a lust to collect as many experiences and stories as possible. To most consumers travel equates to temporary freedom, so its no wonder travel is one of the biggest industries in the world. From future trends of consumers previously identified, the main points that Ryanair need to address are the importance of customer service and segmenting their consumer.

AuthenticityThe way that the traveler has evolved has enhanced their need for a connection with their location as opposed to a diluted version. This is reflected in the rise in numbers of people opting for privately owned apartments over traditional hotels in their chosen destinations. Clare Freeman who runs a vacation apartment in Berlin stated that she realised it is increasingly important to have that neighborhood connection when travelling to not be a clueless tourist, but to have an authentic, interesting experience of a city. (WGSN, 2012) Its important that airlines take on this information to ensure that they are offering their passengers good knowledge of exciting locations to visit in their chosen destination.

ExperienceSushi Classes

Business travelers in particular seek out new and exciting local experiences to add more meaning to their time spent away from home. They are constantly looking for ways to enhance their trips and find knowledgeable pursuits to make a trip feel worthwhile. With travelling becoming so vast, the amount of experiences that could be added to a travel package could really help an airlines performance. Wine Tasting

PrivacyThis is the notion that there can be too much service in some aspects of travelling. Now the focus is to strike a perfect balance between the consumers needs and respecting their privacy. Excellent customer service in the future will involve intelligently responding to guests demands. The Royal Mansour hotel in Morocco have over 500 members of staff to effectively meet all the demands of their hotel guests; however they use a network of underground tunnels so that guests rarely actually see the staff until they need them personally. This helps give the guests a feeling of absolute escape, which is something a lot of travelers aim to find. (WGSN, 2012)

Personalised ServiceWith the role of the consumer being more prominent than ever, it is no longer acceptable to only offer the basics in service. Although luxury service should always ensure that extras are added in every available way; it is now important for budget and economy services to be personalized to ensure the customer feels like the brand is directly connecting with them. In relation to budget airlines, Thomson produce a small holiday guide and travel pack to every passenger that chooses to travel with them. This is specific to that passenger and their chosen destination. This is a small gesture to ensure the consumer feels like they are getting a more luxury service than they expected.

Absolute DesignWith the evolution of technology comes the increase in need for good design. People are now beginning to be provided with a rich, textual experience where brands are including sound, colour and light therapy to match a customers mood. Design now is said to reflect the consumers desire for uncluttered space. Such intricate design is no longer just something which is attractive in the luxury sector, but its accessibility has made it be sought after in the economy sector too.

06Recom menda tions

From the previously stated future trends, reccomendations for Ryanair to succeed in the next three to five years come in two forms. Both high and low risk strategies can be adoped depending on how Ryanair feel about their changing consumers needs and desires.

High RiskOne strategy which would see customer service for Ryanair be praised and not disputed would be an opening of a Ryanair specific waiting area or lounge in airports. This is not necessarily to be a luxury zone, however just somewhere that all travelers can relax and enjoy their time before a flight. This is also a way for Ryanair to collaborate with other brands such as a fashion brand, where they could offer a service of technology to ensure that travelers who have forgotten an item of clothing for their vacation can order it online so that it is sent to their chosen destination before they arrive.

Ryanair could offer iPads in their newly created lounges which could be linked up directly to Amazon. It would be an opportunity for the passangers to order any forgotten holiday items directly to their vacation destination.

Ryanair would benefit from offering a premium economy service to their passengers, which could include priority boarding, a complementary food box, drink service and added leg room. It would be stressed to customers through online promotion that this is in no way first class, instead it acts a way of Ryanair demonstrating higher levels of customer service but with an added charge making it an optional facility for passengers. This would help the brand to reach those customers that they are currently alienating through their no frills approach to travelling.

Segmentation of the consumer is a high risk strategy that Ryanair can implement to increase their target audience in the future. If the brand begin to target specific consumer groups such as students, business travelers and lone passengers through advertising campaigns and promotional work they are likely to increase sales as consumers will feel they are being talked to directly from Ryanair. With airlines such as British Airways beginning to offer a low cost option with higher quality, families and older passengers will choose to travel in comfort. This will single out the lone passengers and students, so deals and offers can be made through a variety of cheap different medias such as social networking to ensure cheap offers are made to secure these passengers. In November Jet2 offered speed dating on board their airplane for two weeks flying singletons to Paris. This marketing campaign is something that Ryanair could hugely benefit from.

Low RiskA travel Pack that is sent by Ryanair to a passengers home address once they have booked a flight is a good way of them offering a personalized service. The guide would be customer specific to a destination with name and space for boarding pass to be printed and stored. Included will be information on arrival destination including transport systems, hire car and map of city. This helps to create meaningful consumption between the consumer and brand.

By creating a wishlist area on their website where consumers can say which cities and attractions they would like to experience., Ryanair could begin to enhance their consumers personalised experience with the brand. They can then use this information to offer suggestions and deals. This can later be used for email marketing; Ryanair can send information to consumers on their holiday destinations in months leading up to their flight. Research from WGSN states that passengers such as,

business travellers whose free time is at an absolute premium seek-out local experiences to add more meaning to spend to their time spent away from home.

Ryanair need to recognize their consumers travel needs and spending and could do so by creating a rewards system. It would work differently to air miles but they could reward their consumers with points which could add up to exclusive experiences, allowing the consumer to be involved in the brand. For example boosting them up to premium economy.

07Con Clus Ion

ConclusionWith the introduction of low fares with high quality coming into the market by competitors to Ryanair, it is important that the brand begins to evolve with their consumers desires. It is self-proclaimed that Ryanair dont act upon customer service, however with consumers beginning to create their own stamp on a brand it is important that Ryanair keep up and begin to offer a higher level of customer service to compete in the marketplace. With the previous recommendations, Ryanair will be able to survive in the changing climate of the travel industry.

Bib liog raphy

Online ReportsDavis, C. (2012). Travellers and the travel industry beyond 2012. Available: http://www.wgsn.com/content/report/Think_Tank/2012/September/travel_trends.html. Last accessed 18th Jan 2013. Liao, C. (2011). Teens and Tweens Technology Usage UK. Available: http://academic.mintel.com/ display/600658/?highlight=true. Last accessed 16th Jan, 2013.

ReportBrooks, D. (2012). Innovations in Fashion. Drapers. 1 (1), 3-7.

WebsitesFriedman, L. (2012). The 8 Best Social Media Campaigns 0f 2012.Available: http://www.imediaconnection.com/content/33270.asp . Last accessed 5th Jan, 2013. Drell, L. (2012). 5 Tech Innovations Improving Travel. Available: http://mashable.com/2012/12/07/ innovation-index-travel/. Last accessed 11th Jan, 2013. Bacon, J. (2012). Flying the Brand Flag for British Airways. Available: http://www.marketingweek. co.uk/trends/flying-the-brand-flag-for-british-airways/4004567.article. Last accessed 16th Jan 2013. Milosevic, M. (2013). Louis Vuitton as a perfect travel companion.Available: http://www.brandingmagazine.com/2012/11/02/louis-vuitton-travel/ . Last accessed Jan 11th 2013. Anonymous. (2012). Tomorrows Hotels..Today. Available: http://www.blochotels.com/index.asp. Last accessed Jan 17th 2013.