Virgin Atlantic hires Bray Leino for domestic routes PR brief

Virgin Atlantic has appointed Bray Leino to promote its debut flights in the UK's short-haul market, following a competitive six-way pitch.

Virgin Atlantic: brings in support for domestic routes
Virgin Atlantic: brings in support for domestic routes

The agency will start on the account immediately and is charged with boosting awareness of Virgin’s new domestic routes against main competitor British Airways on both a national and regional scale, using the typical ‘style mechanics’ associated with Virgin.

Virgin Atlantic will run 24 flights a day between London Heathrow, Manchester, Edinburgh and Aberdeen from 31 March, after successfully bidding for domestic slots left by grounded airline BMI.  

The campaign will target national media in addition to having dedicated regional activity running in the four cities Virgin now flies between. This is designed to boost awareness of the airline in the domestic market to the same level as in the long-haul market.

Alison Weir, head of lifestyle PR at Bray Leino, told PRWeek that the four-month brief would include stunts and ‘brand equity building’ comms to target both leisure and business travellers.

Weir said that the participation of Virgin founder Sir Richard Branson within the campaign was a ‘consideration for any announcement of this scale and size’.

Bray Leino already works with sister brand Virgin Media, which directly recommended it to Virgin Atlantic.

Weir said that being part of the Bray Leino group, an integrated marketing agency that spans advertising, digital, direct, media and PR specialities, allowed the team full access to ‘an extensive planning team and planning tool kit’. She said this enabled the agency to provide a ‘deeper dive’ on consumer behaviour and needs.

Consumers have been able to book the short-haul flights since December, and Virgin Atlantic is creating more than 150 jobs as part of its new operations.

The carrier launched a multi-million-pound TV campaign, its first in two years, in December, which celebrates the talents and skills of its staff and calls them ‘superheroes’.

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