role: Creative Director
ACDs: Alena Cason, Scott Galbraith
design: Peter Hahn, Stefan Georgi, Anna Burns
copy: Alena Cason, JonMichael DaVirro, Chris Mendez
British Airways has a long history of innovation, but in recent years, they have seen that reputation decline as more and more competing airlines have all begun offering similar product and services. We needed to do something that would help bring back British Airways as an innovative thinker while reaching out to one of the largest pockets of innovation in america – Silicon Valley. We focussed on what BA does best, which is connect people, communities and ideas alongside some of the brightest minds in tech and beyond.
The answer was called "Ungrounded: an Innovation Lab in the Sky." We invited 130 thought leaders, from a range of backgrounds, to board a BA flight from San Francisco to London. During that time, they were briefed: you have the length of the flight to tackle four global problems facing the industries of Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM).
The program was launched with an event and evening with influencers. We exposed the delegate selection process and showcased the selected, such as the founders of GoogleX and Craigslist. We held a contest with Mashable to allow readers to win seats on the flight. We had press conferences, google hangouts and media participation from Wired and TechCrunch. And finally, the delegates got to present their ideas at the UN's G8 Summit.
It was British Airways' most successful social campaign in history, reaching over 100M twitter users and generated 11,000 online mentions. That was in addition to the 90+ write ups that reached 225+ million readers. And as important, a positive shift in perception: "I used to think of BA as an old establishment. Now I see it as the future with a dedication to paying attention to people, technology and what's relevant to society and culture today. Bravo. I've been telling everyone about this."