bart_calendar (bart_calendar) wrote,
bart_calendar
bart_calendar

The Eurostar People Are A Bunch Of Idiots

Let me be a marketing geek for a minute here.

As you may have heard since the angry volcano gods have shut down air traffic in Europe the Eurostar - a train that connects the UK to mainland Europe - has suddenly become very popular.

And, in response to the increased ticket demand they have added an extra eight trains a day and tripled their ticket rates.

Who the fuck is advising them on marketing??? This is the worst decision possible.

Look, Eurostar has been having problems because it costs more to take the Eurostar from the UK to France than it does to fly RyanAir and it takes longer.

To counter this they've spent years running really expensive ads in The Herald Tribune and other high end travel magazines trumpeting the comfort and reliability of trains versus planes.

It hasn't worked out that well for them.

Here's what I would have done - canceled all ads for the next three weeks. Then use that money to give free seats on those eight trains a day to anyone who turned up with a plane ticket they couldn't use.

The amount of positive publicity they would have gotten - for free - in every newspaper and magazine they usually advertise in would have been marketing gold. And, it wouldn't be a total wash for them because those people would have spent money on drinks and food on the train. And, people who have never used the train before would have done so - and in a way that can only be described as a positive light.

Then, three weeks from now when this has all blown over, I would have run a huge ad campaign with nothing but pictures of people who took the train during this crisis with testimonials along the line of "When British Airways Let Me Down, Eurostar Got Me Home."

It would have been marketing gold that would have stayed in people's minds for years.

Instead people are going to remember that not only does Eurostar take longer - but they also ripped them off when they needed them most.

Good luck running an ad campaign to change those hearts and minds.
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