Content Highlight of the Week: Air New Zealand, and not a hobbit in sight


Air New Zealand has an impressive recent record with online video content, and its latest initiative keeps up the good work.

This diverting series of films is unlikely to rack up the 13 million views achieved by their Middle-Earth inspired safety videos, but then it’s not really meant to.  The LON/LAX series is designed to attract and hold the attention of a smaller and arguably more discerning audience: the select group of international movers and shakers who regularly fly twixt London and LA. Business Premier class, natch. And the airline has certainly done its homework on the audience, realising that business travellers between these cities are most commonly associated with the entertainment industry or creative start-up businesses. The films therefore feature 6Music DJ and general music savant Gilles Peterson, comedy writer David Quantick (The Thick of It, Veep, etc), and suitably named silicon-roundabout-startup-tech-digital-event-networky-type people 3beards. For those already in the air, the films work well as destination guides that celebrate both the differences and bonds between two of the world’s greatest creative hotbeds.  And for those considering a trip they reveal a seductive and (mostly) unobtrusive peek of product demo to illustrate how Air New Zealand’s Business Premier is the ideal environment for a little bit of work and a bigger bit of restorative relaxation.  That’s best demonstrated by the David Quantick film, in which, intercut with interviews, we see him working on an exclusive LA-London inspired sit-com script that you can read elsewhere on the site. The Quantick film is the pick of the bunch, because he’s a funny bloke and his characterisation of both cities is typically insightful and amusing. We’ll leave him to sign off with his thoughts on the recipe for good comedy, which we think are equally applicable to branded content: ‘It comes down to writing, to wit and to character’.  Air New Zealand’s rivals would do well to take note...