British Airways Targets India Ex-Pats

British Airways has launched a campaign telling India Ex-Pats in the U.S. “It’s time to visit mum!”

The campaign features real people and kicked off this week with an emotional video featuring a mom in India talking about how much she misses her son in America. During the video, she cooks her son's favorite meal for BA to fly to him in New York, but ends up being surprised when instead BA brings her son to her (after not being home for 15 years).

The airline was looking for a mother and son whose story was relatable and who would capture the experience of many thousands of first-generation immigrants who are living away from their family and loved ones. 

“When we met Alka and Ratnesh, we knew we had the right people,” said John McDonald, British Airways’ VP of marketing.

The campaign is specifically aimed at people considering making a trip to India to visit family or friends. 

The company has been targeting this audience for over a year, firstly with research to understand their requirements, needs and wants.

The airline has been communicating with these customers about the benefits of flying British Airways to India, and has been adding Bollywood films to our inflight entertainment system and special Jain, Hindu, Muslim and vegan meals that can be pre-ordered before travel.

“The campaign speaks to an audience living away from their family and missing home,” McDonald tells Marketing Daily. “Based on the responses to the campaign we have seen across our Facebook and Twitter channels, it's a theme that is resonating with many people.”

The effort includes a number of channels, from display media, search and emails to social platforms and ba.com.  In addition to the video, there are offers and other interesting content, like the authentic recipe for Okra Paratha that Alka used to make when her son was growing up. 

“We will be updating our ba.com pages with new content over the next few months,” McDonald says.

The campaign will continue through the end of the year and into 2014.

“India is a large and growing economy and continues to build deep economic and cultural links in the U.S.,” McDonald says. “We fly to five cities in India and supporting these routes through delivering the best possible product and service to our customers and marketing this appropriately makes sense.”

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