Malaysian Media Awards Winners Showcase

2021 | |

Malaysia-Airlines going beyond Price War!

Advertiser: Malaysia Airlines Berhad
Brand: Malaysia Airlines Berhad
Creative Agency: M&C Saatchi; Magna Digital
Credits: -


Objective & Challenge
The MATTA Fair is Malaysia’s largest travel fair and every year in March, Malaysians are spoilt for choices with the cheapest airfare promoted by airlines or travel agencies. 60% of Malaysian travelers will pick the best offers and plan their annual holidays. Consequently, the immediate period postMATTA Fair would typically experience a sharp deep in sales. The objectives set by MalaysiaAirlines were to prevent the sales dip and sustain the sales volume postMATTA fair. The challenge to the agency:

• To increase the sales for MalaysiaAirlines above MATTA fair sales in the subsequent month postMATTA Fair.

• To promote air tickets which were priced 2x higher compared to MATTA Fair.
Insight & Strategy
We needed to understand why MATTA fair did not attract the balance of the 40% travel intenders. What reasons should MalaysiaAirlines create to convert these travel intenders to purchase MalaysiaAirlines products? The agency created Intelligenic – a digital performance solutions that allowed us to understand traveler’s motivation based on their online & offline purchase behaviors. We analyzed 7 different datasets to enable Intelligenic solutions:

• Aircraft seat capacity (load factor) of the various routes • Realtime consumer journey data on the online booking site

• Lookalike modelling based on our frequent flyer database • Audience segments travel behaviour based on booking and actual flying lead time

• Fare prices from Google Flight Search

• Online and offline travel agent sales report • Pixel extension across the entire purchase journey, including all ancillary product pages Intelligenic analytics led us to 2 critical insights:

• Synergy between offline and online advertising spends (creative and media): By integrating offline sales reports, we can clearly evaluate the correlation between offline and online SPENDS vs. offline and online SALES RESULTS. The discovery proofed the need to adopt a holistic view and to optimize total advertising spends not just against ONLINE sales but also OFFLINE sales.

• PostMATTA Fair travel intenders: By analyzing these potential audience full buying journey, we discovered the need to go beyond cheapest airfare to attract our “pricefatigued” travelers. How? We analyzed our customer journey through MalaysiaAirlines ancillary pages (hotels, business class companion fair, business lounge access, children travel privileges, chef oncall, extra baggage allowance and pet cargo) which suggested that these travelers are motivated by convenience and value for every Ringgit spend i.e. appreciate ancillary products beyond just basic ticket price. Thus, we saw the opportunity for a campaign that was ancillaryled, giving birth to the MalaysiaAirlines Travelicious campaign. The campaign strategy focused on: • Optimize total advertising spends to maximize the reach to garner offline and online sales across all sales platform – online travel agent, IBE (Internet Booking Engine), call center, traditional travel agents. • Building a travel package primarily based on Traveler’s purchase motivation i.e ancillary products.
This ancillaryled Travelicious campaign was launched postMATTA from April to July 2019, across 15 markets globally with ancillary promotion 50% off on hotels, business class companion fares, extra baggage allowance, discount on children airfares, pet cargo and insurance PLUS only up to 35% discount on airfare compared to 60% discount during MATTA Fair. Insights gathered from Intelligenic solutions were used for the campaign execution as well:

• Across 15 local/regional/global markets the campaign required 1500 creatives in 10 languages. Dynamic creative optimization (DCO) allowed us to optimize delivery of the best performing messaging combination – language + different types of ancillary promotion + airfare discounts that meets the respective traveler’s needs. This involved housing a repository of campaign materials that allowed us to trigger custom messaging and redesign our creatives (based on flight and ancillary inventory, with realtime fare price comparison from Google Flight Search) all automized within a minute, whilst reducing human error.

• Switching between platforms for effectiveness during the 18 weeks campaigns: Reallocation of budgets between offline (newspaper, radio, digital out of home) and online platforms, audience segments, and creatives that delivered a higher sales return on advertising investment (ROAI), ensuring realtime optimization in a cost and time efficient manner.

• Create more customized lookalike segments based on their ancillary preferences, as exhibited by their behaviors on MalaysiaAirlines booking site, which was a new discovery with Intelligenic solutions vs. traditionally Google/YouTube custom audiences search behavior.

• Optimizing total spends ratio: Analyzing historical campaign data allowed us to identify sales impact and correlation between online and offline advertising spends (e.g. senior travelers who were served MalaysiaAirlines online promotion actually bought their air travel package from travel agents) Thus, from an 80:20 online offline spend ratio, we optimized towards a 60:40 ratio for an improved total Sales Return on advertising Investment. All made possible by Intelligenic!
1) How media impacted the nonprice sensitive target audience? a. With ticket priced 2x higher compared to MATTA Fair, Travelicious campaign attracted 2.24 million visitors, total website visits grew by a factor of 2.17X compared to MATTA Fair. b. 71% of customers have opted for higher value tickets with ancillary promotions. 2) How media impacted MH sales performance and aircraft load factor? a. We almost tripled the sales growth by +155% compared to MATTA fair RM 55M. b. Load factor increased by +22%, and all 15 markets showed positive sales growth at an average of +29% compared to sales during MATTA fair. c. Ancillary services contributed to 35.5% of the total sales, which was +100% compared to prior and during MATTA Fair. 3 top selling ancillary products were MHHoliday Hotel Package Extra Baggage Allowance Children travel privileges 3) How media impacted the sales return on advertising investment? a. We achieved all time high sales return on advertising investment of 128x (every RM1 media spend in offline and online media delivered 128x in sales value) compared to MATTA Fair 119x. 4) How media impacted MalaysiaAirlines brand overall? b. Brand Buzz increased +44% (from 9.6 during MATTA to 13.9 during Travelicious) c. Consumer perception about the MH Brand Value increased positively by +31% (from 11 during MATTA to 14.6 during Travelicious) With Intelligenic solutions, MalaysiaAirlines can clearly own a full service value carrier position instead of cheap tickets competition.