Does American Airlines' New Ad Blame the Customer?

American Airlines has a new ad campaign and video: "World's Greatest Flyers."

Critics say the ad blames the customer: If you want a better travel experience, pack better, bring headphones, and change your attitude. Not everyone appreciated the advice. 

American Air ad

The company's VP of global marketing told AdAge, "The demographic of the type of customers we have is changing. The pervasive use of social tools, for example, digital and video -- these are things that are becoming more important for us to connect to and for us to start a dialogue with our customers." Fernand Fernandez also said, "The bigger goal here is to create, celebrate and acknowledge these types of behaviors and hopefully, amplify them on social media."

Encouraging customers to use #GreatestFlyers, the airline will see about as many positive comments as negative ones.

Discussion Starters:

  • What's your view of the campaign? The reaction may reflect the typical cynicism of people, particularly those on Twitter. Or could the negativity have been avoided?
  • Could American have done something different to change the social media conversation?