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Lack Of Promotion Of New AQ Routes  
User currently offlineSANFan From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 5353 posts, RR: 15
Posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 2244 times:

I'm curious and confused and would appreciate input from anyone close to Aloha (like you, Aloha73G.)

AQ is starting new service connecting SAN/SNA and LIIH/KOA on Jan 7 2008; it's already been discussed here on A.net:
Aloha To Fly SNA & SAN To KOA & LIH (by Aloha73G Sep 22 2007 in Civil Aviation)

My question is: why has Aloha not promoted these new routes at all? There has been no PR on their website, and no recent "reminder" of the new routes (except, on their route map, they now have an incomplete rendering of the new service.) I've searched the Star and the Union and I found articles back in October in each paper but I've seen nothing since and I'm also not aware of advertising. The SAN.org site has so far not mentioned the service either; another disappointment, although not a surprise. (For all the effort they are putting into acquiring new service for the city, the SDIA folks seem to me to underplay the need for publicity of the new routes.)

I emailed AQ and got back a very lame response that indicated to me that the person who sent me the email didn't even know the service was coming.

The new flights are a bit complex (and very clever, I think) and the SD Union got the routings and details completely screwed up in their article. I would think a bit of PR on Aloha's part would probably be a help in people understandding how the flights will work. But aside from that, how can they start up new and exciting routes and expect them to succeed if nobody knows about them? Do they expect these new routes and flights to fill themselves or are they planning on selling all the seats thru wholesalers as packages?

Any ideas out there?

Merry Christmas all; I'm off to start my shopping now...

bb

10 replies: All unread, jump to last
 
User currently offlineJohnClipper From Hong Kong, joined Aug 2005, 835 posts, RR: 0
Reply 1, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 14 hours ago) and read 2240 times:

AQ might not have any $$$ to pay the PR department to push the flights...

User currently offlineSANFan From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 5353 posts, RR: 15
Reply 2, posted (6 years 7 months 1 week 4 hours ago) and read 2128 times:

Yeah, I realize their checkbook is a little tight these days but I would think if they're going to the trouble of starting up brand new flights on brand new routes, and in January no less, they might have figured in a couple of bucks in the start-up budget for at least an announcement.

Here we are at the holidays and, for the last month anyway, there must have been a few people looking for gift ideas or planning trips for early next year for a week in Kauai or on the Big Island, who made their usual arrangements thru UA or HA for connecting flights, but who might have loved to try the new n/s flights out of Lindbergh or John Wayne if only they'd known about them...

Aloha has had a pretty static schedule out of San Diego for a couple of years now -- one flight a day to Maui. I'm sure it must be doing fine, but now, out of the blue, they are doubling their service out of SAN to totally new islands that are not served (nonstop) by anyone else, nor have they ever been, and there's not a whisper of the service coming....

I always find it hard to believe the lack of media play and other publicity by certain carriers; it's essentially free advertising (which can be pretty expensive!) Of course, some carriers don't spend any money on advertising either and then act shocked and surprised when the flights go out empty and have to be canned.

Good luck with your new flights Aloha!

bb


User currently offlineB737100 From United States of America, joined Jul 2004, 153 posts, RR: 0
Reply 3, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 13 hours ago) and read 1970 times:

They have a pretty nice sign on the roadway at Terminal two in SAN.


Boeing 737 sunjet service
User currently offlineETA Unknown From Comoros, joined Jun 2001, 2072 posts, RR: 0
Reply 4, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1901 times:

Reminds me of when Gulf Air announced plans to fly to Australia in the 90's... there was no marketing at all until after the first month of operations. I think it comes down to incompetence in some cases- some people are in jobs that shouldn' t be there.

User currently offlineLAXintl From United States of America, joined May 2000, 24820 posts, RR: 46
Reply 5, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 8 hours ago) and read 1897 times:

In general AQ does minimal public advertising on the mainland. I'm sure part of it being that California (and SoCal more specifically) is one of the largest media markers in the country and hence very expensive. For instance I know lots of San Fernando Valley residents (and even a travel agent or two) that did not know AQ served Burbank until after it pulled out!

Ultimately, AQ is probably watching its cost carefully especially now with continued quarterly losses. But I do agree one needs to get ones name out above all the noise in large media markets like SoCal as people will not automatically just show up because there is a flight. I have in the past been critical of airlines like FLYi, Skybus, Spirit, Delta with its LAX build up which expect to launch service, fail to advertise and wonder why loads might be so terrible.

p.s. - If you really want to see something from Aloha, they do some times have a small add in the AAA magazine if you are a member!



From the desert to the sea, to all of Southern California
User currently offlineHNL-Jack From United States of America, joined Mar 2001, 818 posts, RR: 0
Reply 6, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 1850 times:

It's more than likely a function of funds and how best to use them. They appear hard pressed financially and at last report only had twenty eight million in cash reserves.

AQ can probably rely on its industry partners such as wholesalers, travel agents and its shareholder UA to fill the B-737-700 aircraft it's flying to the islands given their rather small number of seats on their limited number of flights. AQ is a niche player and as such, broad based advertising strategies probably would not serve them well.



Grew up in the business and continued the family tradition.
User currently offlineAloha73G From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2354 posts, RR: 4
Reply 7, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 6 hours ago) and read 1833 times:

My guess is the flights were all partially "pre-filled" by transferring LIH/KOA (and even some HNL) bookings off of the OGG flight.

Due to their size, Aloha has always seemed to use very targeted advertising. I have seen online ads for the new routes, and am guessing that they are focusing on travel agents.

Also, they are established in the broader SAN-Hawai'i market, so additional advertising is probably not necessary....remember that Aloha knows how the bookings/yields are looking so they might feel that advertising is not necessary to fill the planes.

-Aloha!



Aloha Airlines - The Spirit Moves Us. Gone but NEVER Forgotten. Aloha, A Hui Hou!
User currently offlineSANFan From United States of America, joined Aug 2006, 5353 posts, RR: 15
Reply 8, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1804 times:

Advertising aside, what the heck does it cost them to post a PR on their own website?
http://www.alohaairlines.com/about/press_releases.php
There's nothing wrong with the story about Patti Smart (the last PR on their website),
"ALOHA AIRLINES SALUTES PATTI SMART FOR 50 YEARS OF ALOHA IN THE SKY"
and maybe it's just me, but I would think announcing new routes/service would perhaps put more people on their airplanes than announcing the retirement of a flight attendant (assuming they can't do PRs on both topics)?!

Aloha has eliminated their flight schedule from their website, they seem to be ignoring their Press Release page -- things must be pretty rough at AQ headquarters these days. I really hope 2008 goes better for them.

bb


User currently offlineAloha73G From United States of America, joined Jul 2003, 2354 posts, RR: 4
Reply 9, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1786 times:

Over the past month they often have an "ad" on their home page for "New Route Specials."

They have NEVER been good about posting press releases on their website, though they are much better about it now than in the past.

As far as Patti Smart, that story got them FAR more press coverage (worldwide) than any of their new routes ever did.

The timetable is gone, but it will be back in 2008 I believe. They are currently undergoing a MAJOR IT overhaul and in 2008 they should be rolling out alot of new technology with regard to online/kiosk services.....hopefully to catch up with HA which has one of the BEST websites out there. Notice that the flight tracker disappeared from their site earlier this year (it didn't work anyway) and a new and much improved one was added a few months back. I belive the same will be true with the timetable.

-Aloha!



Aloha Airlines - The Spirit Moves Us. Gone but NEVER Forgotten. Aloha, A Hui Hou!
User currently offlineBobnwa From United States of America, joined Dec 2000, 6443 posts, RR: 9
Reply 10, posted (6 years 7 months 2 days 5 hours ago) and read 1773 times:

As long as the flights show up in the internet booking systems and the other booking systems it is being promoted as much as it needs to be. I'm sure the large travel providers, ie: tour operators, corporate travel departments etc. have been contacted. Airlines today do not do a lot of advertising to promote routes, yet somehow the planes full up. (build it and they will come)

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