Bronson Holds on Loosely
The Little Engine That Could
This past weekend I had my first flight aboard Virgin America and was so impressed by my mood altering experince that I did some study on the brand and my long time hero, Richard Bronson. Within moments of boarding I noticed a shift in the atmosphere simply by taking in the warm and soothing pink to purple moodlighting and nursery rhymes overhead. I felt like a combination of the rock star I’d always imagined I’d be, (it’s never too late) and the security I had as a child. Not a bad start for the majority of nervous flyers. Then came the world’s most loved safety video (so glad they played it twice) and complimentary Netflix in the sky. Clearly, Virgin America is on a mission to invent a lasting impression for it’s guests which is increasingly rare for any business. So here I sat buckled in, ready to embrace a brand I could finally fall in love with.
Why Can’t We Just Stay and Have Fun
My beloved has been kidnapped by some boring floosy from Alaska. Alaska Airlines I think is her name. Alaska Airlines bought out Virgin America in March and is currently phasing out the brand altogether. Buckets of tears. Alaska has a very different business model (like elevator music) and sadly, it does not employ the creative genius it would need to maintain its own fiscal-minded brand and that of Virgin America.
I Must Find the Strength to Move On
It remains to be seen what will happen now – for fans like me – with fewer airlines in the US than ever, and no fun ones. Virgin was the best consumer airline in America with flights from more than 25 cities, sweeping every single major consumer travel award, and becoming a profitable contender. I may never fly with them again, but I have much to take away from my experience. Even if the design and digital industry ‘experts’ do not, I believe that my own company can thrive by delivering creative solutions that resonate with the heart. We also, can earn lasting loyalty and love that you don’t normally see from large corporate agencies, health clubs or a small solar energy launcher. Businesses come and go but beloved brands make lasting impressions and remain in your heart.