Qatar Airways’ Hyped New Brand Film, “The World Like Never Before”

Since January 3, Qatar Airways has been teasing something throughout their social media channels with the hashtag #LikeNeverBefore.

Many of us assumed that this was a big announcement that we should actually be excited about. After all, Qatar Airways does a lot of innovative stuff, so that wouldn’t be unexpected. Could the airline announce a big round of expansion? Maybe they’re introducing a new onboard service concept? Another new plane order? A fourth global alliance?

However, after an endless amount of teasing, we learned a couple of days ago that #LikeNeverBefore is just a “Hollywood-like brand film” that Qatar Airways has created.

Well, the wait is over, the countdown clock on Qatar Airways’ website has stopped, and they’ve now released the video. Let me emphasize what Qatar Airways’ CEO, Akbar Al Baker, had to say about this:

“Qatar Airways has once again taken the initiative when it comes to innovation and we believe that this campaign will change the way the aviation industry will promote global travel in the future. This campaign embodies everything at the heart of Qatar Airways’ brand values, as well as the pride we share in providing exceptional service to our passengers across the globe.”

This “brand film” is going to “change the way the aviation industry will promote global travel in the future.” That’s a tall order, no?

Well, here’s the brand film, which in reality I’d consider to be more of a 60 second ad than anything:

And here’s a behind the scenes look at how it was made (by the way, I’m shocked they got His Excellency to read off a teleprompter):

Is it a very nice ad? Yes. Was it worth the hype, and will it change the way the aviation industry promotes global travel in the future? I’m gonna go with “no” on that one…

What do you make of Qatar Airways’ new “The World Like Never Before” ad?

Comments

  1. Oh god, let’s analyze what he said:
    1. The pax are the heart of what QR does: So who are the pax? I believe the majority of their passengers are african, south and southeast asian, not a white family…
    2. The video wanted to be original distinctive and authentic but it is the usual video of a white family traveling to paris or china…
    3. Crucially it had to connect with its GLOBAL audience: how on earth did he think that in the era of “hollywood is so white” that this video with connect to global audience?
    4. Tell the brand story in a fresh and imaginative way: Who sees anything fresh and imaginative here????
    Anyway, while Qatar (and many other ME carriers) almost always uses white people in their ads and safety videos but their main passengers are asians (India being the largest) and africans. I am pretty sure Al-Baker doeasn’t even see the issue here…

  2. Absolutely useless move from Qatar Airways. They love wasting money on ridiculous campaigns. They’d better focus on improving they abysmal Frequent Flyer programme and their QPesos.

  3. OK…WTF…this is such an useless investment with emphasis on markets where the airline doesn’t even have much room to expand.

    This must be the season of promotional content for the ME3, since I was interviewed by Emirates Marcom group two days ago on service styles, expectations and improvements that the airline can incorporate to attract everyone to “Fly Better.” This came just a week after an invitation by Etihad to discuss re-branding and improving service concepts. #competition!

  4. @Ken spot on.
    I understand the LA LA land (movie) theme here but this is a few years out of date. The “orientalist fantasy” of the graphics reminds me of a 60’s era poster from Pan Am. This nuclear white family who fly Q Suites can’t possibly be Qatar’s main customers.
    I enjoyed flying Qatar and it find it very strange that an airline that is so good at catering to the business customer can’t get the PR right.

  5. @RC:

    Completely agree about QR as a brand and this terrible video. But let’s be honest here, Akbar Al Baker is probably the most brand-damaging aspect of QR. This video pales in comparison to the nonsense that’s fallen out of AAB’s wordhole.

  6. The innovation may be a commercial targeted to wealthy western families to travel in business class. Normaly, airline ads for families promote the lowest price in economy. But, was it worth a count-down?

  7. Mary Poppins meets Willy Wonka’s Chocolate Factory!
    Seriously, so much hype for so very little substance.

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