We love a bit of online viral marketing, and three airlines this week have really taken the internet by storm. If you have been living under a stone for the last few days, here’s a catch up for you to take your dinner party conversation to a whole new level. The three airlines in question are British Airways, Virgin America and Air New Zealand.

British Airways

No. This isn’t a fake video…. If you have been in London recently, especially on the taxi-run into Heathrow, you may have noticed some genius animated billboards taking plane spotting to a whole new level. Designed by Ogilvy 12th floor, the British Airways digital billboards use custom-built surveillance technology to detect planes flying overhead and change the current digital display to that of a child pointing at the plane. The billboards also display the plane’s flight number and route. To take a look at the latest arrivals, head to Chiswick and Picadilly circus, where the video billboards are conveniently positioned on the flight path. Interestingly the adverts don’t say “Here comes the ontime BA flight xxx…” or don’t poke at their competitors, which would be a nice touch “Here comes the delayed xxxx flight from…” Still, the youtube clip has already amassed a massive following.

Virgin America

Yes, another video, this one showcasing the dymanic and uber-cool nature of Virgin America, who is determined to shake up continental American travel and offer something above and beyond the watered down experience that sadly most Americans were subject to when travelling between states. On October 29th, Virgin America launched a brand new video to be shown onboard, which has a unique twist. The full safety message has been put to a song, and the instructions are danced through the 5-minute soundtrack. Filmed by director Jon Chu (who also shot Justin Bieber’s ‘Never Say Never’ concert film), it stars a varied cast that includes American Idol contestants and Olympic champions.

The tongue-in-cheek video features 14 different dance styles, and took 26 hours to film on set, using a total of 36 dancers. You really must have been under a stone not to see this one, as it’s already scored (amazingly) over 6.5million hits in a month.

Air New Zealand

We love Air New Zealand‘s seemingly unbreakable bond with ‘Middle Earth’ and The Lord Of The Rings franchise. Making a phenominal connection, helping promote the magical country with it’s tourism drive, Air New Zealand has refused to lose its link to the mega-movie big-screen spectacular. The latest incarnation, a promotional video,”Just another day in middle earth” uses real-life ANZ staff who have had a ‘make-under’ in order to appear like characters from the latest movie, that is coming to the theatres soon.

Keen Hobbit lovers will notice the video also features Kiwi Dean O’Gorman, who plays dwarf Fili, and the voice of Sylvester McCoy, The Hobbit Trilogy’s Radagast the Brown. To support the ANZ video, viewers of the video from around the world can enter for their chance to win one of four trips of a lifetime for two to their choice of either Middle-earth (New Zealand) or to the premiere of The Hobbit: The Desolation of Smaug in Los Angeles, including airfares, accommodation and rental car. (But be quick, it finishes 27th November)

Another feature of the Air New Zealand marketing campaign will be the unveiling of a Boeing 777-300 aircraft in special Hobbit film-inspired livery on December 2 in Auckland.

Posted by:Jonny Clark

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