Good and Bad PR: BA vs Ryanair

Good PR

I’m in the 1% of the population who’ve never watched a single episode of Game of Thrones (I know, sorry) but I do plan to binge as much of it as possible before Season 8 arrives (mostly because I have FOMO).

With all the excitement surrounding the return of Game of Thrones in April for its last ever, official season, Adidas has made a clever PR move by launching a range of themed trainers surrounding the hugely popular, fantasy drama series.

There are different designs in the range that represent different houses or groups of individuals from the series, including: White Walkers, Night’s Watch and the Targaryens’ Dragons, along with House Targaryen, Stark and Lannister.

The Adidas x Game of Thrones range is modelled on the Ultra Boost 4.0 running shoe and retails at £149.95.

They’ve picked up coverage on the likes of the Metro, Esquire, The Sun, Gizmodo, T3 and more over the last week or so and will probably be selling out quickly, no doubt.

Bad PR

On Monday this week, a British Airways plane bound for Düsseldorf landing in Edinburgh; not because of any kind of emergency or mid-flight altercation between passengers, but simply because flight-plan paperwork wasn’t filed correctly, which led to the monumental mistake.

BA quite rightly got some stick for this, because how exactly does that happen without anyone realising at least half way to Edinburgh? However, if you think this week’s bad PR nod goes to BA, you’d be wrong.

Ryanair, spotting an opportunity to have a dig at its much higher-end “rival”, tweeted a screenshot headline of the story, next to an image of a ‘Geography for Dummies’ book, with the following message:

This backfired spectacularly, because an airline that’s held in such low esteem as Ryanair is, is certainly in no place to call out another airline for anything. Ever.

British Airways responded (and Ryanair jibbed back):

The great people of Twitter rushed to the defence of British Airways, with retorts such as posting an image of ‘Customer Service for Dummies’, ‘Social Media Engagement for Dummies’, ‘Online Reputation Management for Dummies’ and lots of examples of when Ryanair had landed at the wrong airports. There were also messages suggesting that Ryanair would’ve charged customers for the detour, which was hilarious (and probably true) and this absolute gem:

The backfiring of Ryanair’s dig at BA was covered by plenty of media outlets, which completely distracted people from BA’s failing and just made Ryanair look a bit stupid.

Written by Shannon Peerless, 10 Yetis @ShazzaYeti on Twitter. Seen any good or bad PR lately? You know what to do @10Yetis on Twitter or andy@10Yetis.co.uk on email

PRmoment Awards 2020