Travelling around Christmas time could be stressful. You want to get to your destination on time, luggage not lost, or a pleasant flight. Many travellers make a point of getting to the airport early, allowing extra time for going through long line-ups. That could mean lots of time hanging around before boarding.
A chat with a lively Santa on a TV screen certainly is a nice way to kill time and who would have guessed that this Santa took notes and made your dream come true. On your arrival, what you told Santa was wrapped in a box with a bow. It was delivered at the designated carousel for your flight. Over 250 travellers were in awe when they arrived at the Calgary International Airport. Westjet swiftly delivered their gift on the carousel conveyor. Now, that is wowing your customers.
A video footage was produced and it was posted on YouTube. Westjet was pleasantly surprised by the popularity of the video. Westjet did three things exceptionally well:
- Making an idea surreal – Westjet leveraged the gift giving idea well. They pushed the envelope on what would wow the customers. From planting a life-size gift box at the airport to making use of technology to capture names and wish lists, to filling the carousel conveyor with beautifully wrapped gifts, everything was unexpected. No one anticipated that a voluntary casual conversation with Santa at a departure gate would bring real gifts on arrival at a different city hundreds of miles away.
- Effective execution – Within a short 4 hours, the Westjet elves were able to shop, wrap and deliver the gifts. It is no small feat to pick up more than 200 gifts. I can relate to the effort from doing my own Christmas shopping. Westjet planned the event well and execution was perfect. Everyone knew his responsibilities. One could tell from the video the excitement of the staff involved.
- Personal touch – It would have been much more straight-forward to hand out the same gift to everyone. Yet, Westjet went the extra mile. They logged the name of the passenger and what he asked for. Each gift was labelled accordingly. The personal touch says that Westjet cares and they pay attention.
Leveraging the idea of gift giving, Westjet created an exceptional experience for its customers. They gained a gargantuan boost to its brand. That is the gift to Westjet for their creativity and efforts in doing something exceptional. Those who received the unexpected gifts would be talking about it for a long time. For your business, what could you do to wow your customers?
© Connie Siu 2013. All rights reserved.