WestJet gives shocked travellers gifts in real-time

Real-time marketing now has a festive offshoot—real-time gifting. As part of its 2013 holiday campaign, WestJet gave customized gifts to surprised travelers landing at Calgary International Airport. “The WestJet Christmas Miracle” began with guests waiting to board at Toronto Pearson International Airport and John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport. A virtual Santa Claus booth was […]

Real-time marketing now has a festive offshoot—real-time gifting.

As part of its 2013 holiday campaign, WestJet gave customized gifts to surprised travelers landing at Calgary International Airport. “The WestJet Christmas Miracle” began with guests waiting to board at Toronto Pearson International Airport and John C. Munro Hamilton International Airport. A virtual Santa Claus booth was set up in the lounges so unsuspecting guests could chat virtually with a remote Santa and share what they wanted for Christmas. Their wish lists—from practical (new socks and underwear) to high-end (a big-screen TV)—were recorded by 19 hidden cameras.

WestJet staff sprung into action to purchase the specific gifts mentioned and had them wrapped in time for when the travellers touched down in Calgary. Then, as the travellers stood waiting at the baggage carousel, the labeled gifts made their way down the luggage chute to the perplexed passengers.

More than 150 WestJet staff and its “digital command centre” helped pull off the stunt, which was captured in the company’s second-ever Christmas video. The video was released Monday, and features WestJet employees picking up some of the gifts at WestJet partners Best Buy Canada and Crosslron Mills.

When the video reaches 200,000 views on YouTube, WestJet Cares for Kids will donate flights through WestJet partner charity Ronald McDonald House Charities.

A charitable aspect was also incorporated into WestJet’s holiday video last year, which featured a flash mob of elves and carolers that entertained red-eye flight travelers in the boarding lounge at Calgary’s airport. When that video hit 25,000 views, the company gave a family in need flights via its community investment program. That video went on to get roughly 472,000 views.

This year’s video was produced by Studio M; Globacore Interactive Technologies handled the virtual santa booth. Mosaic is responsible for the national PR work.

Brands Articles

Schick bids young men to think more about their shave routine

'Don't be like dad' is the message behind a new integrated campaign

Springboard rebrands with Stephen Thomas

New identity shows Ontario charitable organization is people-focused

Telus helps Canadians give back to their communities

Survey shows half of Telus' customers stay with it due to its community involvement

KFC Canada tests beer at two Toronto locations

Starting this fall, the quick-serve restaurant will serve domestic and imported beer

Milk West and DDB launch animated webseries

No hard sell, just a milk carton and his buddies

Air Canada and Rickard’s seek Canada’s top bars

Promotion in enRoute magazine connects beer brand to top pubs in cities across Canada

Watch This: Moment Factory lights up Parc de la Gorge

Turning a park into a glowing, immersive, multimedia experience to convince hikers to stay the night

Most chief marketers feel underpaid: CMO Council report

Smart alliances and digital skills key to CMOs' salary