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Can an Ad Save a Doomed Plane?

Thirty-eight years in the past, a significant airline producer used to be in deep trouble and was hoping a bit of of promoting would bail it out. Adweek’s July 14, 1980, factor carried the scoop of a brand new marketing campaign geared toward salvaging the popularity of the DC-10 jet—and with it, the fortunes of maker McDonnell Douglas.

Somewhat over a yr prior, the port-side engine on American Airways Flight 191 ripped off the wing all through takeoff at Chicago O’Hare. The airplane stalled, crashed and killed 273 folks. Whilst the NTSB would fault American for erroneous upkeep, the general public blamed the airplane, nicknaming it the “Loss of life Cruiser 10.”

Input J. Walter Thompson, which solid former astronaut Pete Conrad in a chain of commercials by which he staked his popularity at the jet. Excellent success with that. “The marketing campaign would possibly fire up extra controversy and result in renewed public worry,” Adweek reported. McDonnell Douglas scrapped the DC-10 quickly afterwards, limping towards an eventual merger with Boeing.


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