Qatar Airlines

Qatar Airways is the national carrier of the State of Qatar and is one of the world’s fastest growing airlines, catering to a worldwide network of 82 destinations.

Sky News studio

To help drive their expansion in the UK and internationally, Qatar were looking for an opportunity that would deliver the right audience and broad coverage – with year round presence. While Qatar and their agency Starcom were looking at various weather opportunities available in the market, we were convinced that the breadth and depth of our offering via the award winning Sky News would make it a clear winner – they agreed.

The campaign comprised of 5 different viewing platforms – allowing Qatar to reach Sky News’ desirable and affluent audience via multiple touch points. Coverage also included Sky News International, driving the brand into over 70 million homes and 1 million hotel rooms worldwide. The relationship has now spanned over 4 years with a new 2 year extension just agreed.

Objectives

  • Grow brand awareness and perception in the UK and internationally
  • Raise awareness of Qatar as a premium 5-star airline
  • Communicate the quality of the Qatar service
  • Increase share of voice against the competition

The Sponsorship

Qatar’s sponsorship of Sky News Weather comprised of the following elements:

  • TV Sponsorship – Sponsorship credits on the 29 Sky News weather reports every day – generating over 4,000 minutes of on-air branding during the campaign
  • Sky News International – Sponsorship credits extended onto the Sky News International feed which broadcasts around the world
  • Interactive – Sponsorship credits every 3 minutes on Sky News Active’s looping weather updates reaching 622,000 household a week
  • Sky Text – Branding on the UK’s leading digital text service’s weather section, generating a weekly audience of over 500,000
  • Online – To mirror the broadcast sponsorship, Qatar received sponsor accreditation and branding around all weather related online content – generating 9.3 million impressions.

The Research
SPA were commissioned to measure the impact prior to and during 3 key periods of the campaign. Using qualitative and quantitative research methods; brand awareness; perception; and consideration were measured.

Brand Awareness
A key objective of the campaign for Qatar was to raise the profile of their brand. This in a market with many established names with much larger marketing budgets including BA, Virgin, American Airlines, Emirates and Qantas and United.

Prior to the campaign, 42% of viewers had heard of Qatar. The sponsorship’s impact drove the awareness of the brand throughout the campaign and at the final research stage it had reached 81%. This effectively put the brand’s awareness up to the same levels as Qantas, United and Emirates but using a considerably smaller spend.

Brand Consideration
Those that have seen the sponsorship are significantly more likely to rate Qatar Airways as their top preference. Prior to the research only 1% chose Qatar as their preference for flying to the Far East- this increased to 15% at the final stage of the research.

Meeting The Objectives
The research illustrates how Qatar’s sponsorship of Sky News Weather has helped deliver significant progress in achieving their objectives.

Their sponsorship successfully portrayed Qatar as a luxurious, high quality airline and has clearly elevated the perception of the brand. Sky News’ wide distribution has enabled global coverage and the research supports that awareness of Qatar has risen, as has its consideration rating.

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