I rant like a broken CD about the importance of a powerful branding idea to drive business. Nowhere are the positive effects of an “idea” more evident than at Southwest Airlines. Southwest’s suit strategy is “be the lowest cost provider of airline travel in the U.S.” (The “world” should be in their future.) If every fiber of its corporate being is put into reducing costs, today and in the future, the company has a mission…an idea.
But as Carmine Gallo (www.carminegallo.com) would ask: What’s in it for the consumer? The answer is “savings,” but that’s not very message-sexy. So the creative solution to low-cost carrier is “freedom.” You are now free to move about the country. Brilliant idea. Brilliant translation of the idea into creative. Brilliant mnemonic. You can’t say those words without hearing the voiceover.
Why is Southwest the only airline to announce a quarterly profit? Its fuel hedge program. Management thought ahead. (Ford, GM, you listening?) Southwest has an idea. When you have an idea, you have focus. When you have focus you can fend off the opposite. Peace!