Joon has recently pulled back the curtain on its brand image. The ‘younger’ sister carrier to Air France, Joon is actively targeting millennials, a similar concept to competitor IAG’s Level product. The difference between Joon and Level being the key addition of a true international and regional business class product.
The airline has gone to a lot of effort to explain the product, and has taken a bold step in positioning the brand as anything but an airline. “Joon is a fashion brand, a personal assistant, a TV channel on demand and oh … Joon does flying too!” states the airline’s press pack.
Yes, well, quite. The brand is certainly pitched to younger adventurers, with the latest video content featuring two twenty-somethings enjoying the virtual products the airline is promising in just a few months time.
But it’s clear when digging a little deeper behind what is a slightly cringe-worthy approach to a brand reveal, is that the product has great roots, and potentially a stronger product and brand platform than its direct competitor, Level. The tongue in cheeky approach to their video also echoes the same, punchy, playful approach Air France recently adopted to their safety and product information videos. This nicely reflects the synergy between the sister carriers.
The airline has really steeped its product in millennial culture, with TV programming from Vice and Red Bull TV. There are also partnerships with the likes of Airbnb and Le BHV Marais. The soft product goes further, with organic food produce, stylish white sneakers and uniforms that are 60% recycled from plastic bottles. All of these elements are big ticks for an emerging, socially responsible generation who pick their consumption based on brands that reflect their own desires and needs.
The airline hasn’t released details of their business class product, showcasing how important it is for the airline to get this product correct, considering it will support Air France’s mainline fleet destinations. The Business Class product is a vital part of the equation to make the airline successful.
Based on the visuals, we know the airline will initially save costs by utilising Air France’s existing (and older) NeV4 seat to start with, followed by a fully flat-bed business class seat in a high density configuration, perhaps something like the recently released Zodiac Optima seat.
The new brand showcases a lot of blue, and we do mean a lot of blue (Pantone 2736C to be exact) however, the airline is offsetting this traditionally bold and basic colour with vibrant lime green accents against a clean white contrasting palette.
The colour, very similar to ANA’s core brand colour, brings back the sea of blue which airlines have been so keen to steer away from, however in our opinion Joon is bringing it back with a bold, considered and fresh approach.
While the brand seems to be well thought three – and we look forward to seeing how it evolves in reality – we still don’t love the livery, which feels unfinished. The logo itself seems at odds with the Air France product. It is neither similar enough nor different enough from the ‘big sister’ as Joon calls Air France.
We also fear that an airline that refers to itself as a rooftop bar, a lifestyle brand or a fashion brand is certainly going to need to reposition itself soon after. Consumers can quickly read through this marketing speak. Successful brands in the millennial community have a simple brand promise.
Brands like Uber, airbnb and Apple all have a clear, service driven message, connecting consumers to an end product without any fuss. Joon would benefit from the same, simplistic brand premise. After all, uber hasn’t launched a TV channel, or a fashion brand, and Joon should follow the successes of the brands that resonate with millennials.
This said, the route network featuring some of Europe’s more creative hubs such as Berlin, Lisbon and Barcelona will certainly match this millennial passenger base, and with Fortaleza and Seychelles long-haul flights starting in Summer, the airline is certainly targeting leisure destinations for its long-haul plan.
We applaud Air France Group for creating a strong visual identity, and a considered approach to a lower-cost full service product. The brand has to work hard to prove it’s not a bargain basement product, but still with affordable fares, something Virgin America constantly struggled with. However, marketing speak aside, it seems Joon has a good recipe for success.