Currently, Irish government holds 25.1% of shareholding in Aer Lingus. The airline company operates as ‘value carrier’ while it has signed number of agreements air line companies of other countries such as Aer Arann, Air Bus etc in order to manage its low cost services. Primary market for Aer Lingus includes Republic of Ireland, continental Europe, UK and USA. In the year 2012, the Irish airline company has carried more than 9.6 million passengers across the boundaries. In the year ended 31 December 2012, the company has reported annual revenue of more than €1,350 million with operating profit hovering over €65 million. The company has established its base airport in Belfast City and shown the interest to expand its destination routes by 2 times in next couple of years (Competition Commission, 2013). The Irish airline carrier has established its base in Belfast City along destination points include Manchester, Birmingham, Gatwick and Heathrow airports of UK (Competition Commission, 2013). Great Britain-Ireland destination root contributes 30% to 33% of the top line growth and 45% of total passengers for Air Lingus. Until 2001, Aer Lingus operated as full service carrier but after 9/11 world trade centre terrorism the company has transformed itself as low-cost carrier. Since 2009, the company has completely changed its positioning statement has become ‘value carrier’ by serving centrally located airports in order to decrease its travel path and save the fuel cost in order to deliver service to customers at competitive price. The company has also entered in partnership with existing low-cost airlines in order to deliver low cost services to customers...
Conjoint impact of reduction of disposable income of consumers and entry of resource rich international airlines have pushed Aer Lingus to reposition as value carrier. Hence it can be said that, although the problem for Aer Lingus is strategic in nature but the brand can reposition itself with the help of integrated marketing communication strategy. However, let’s try to understand changing macro environmental challenges for Aer Lingus in terms of PESTLE Analysis.
VCCP Blue (2008) has pointed out that Aer Lingus spends only €2 million for implementing its IMC plan which is way below than the industry average of advertising to sales ratio (A/S ratio). Hence it is recommended for the company to increase its advertising position in order to use all channels of communication in effective manner. On the basis of PESTLE analysis, it can be said that the company needs to promote its green initiatives such decreasing the carbon emission in short haul travel, creating greenery in African nations etc in the form of press release. They need to use the print media advertisement in order to release key benefits that can be achieved through merger & acquisition in order to create positive word of mouth regarding the event among customers. Such kind of indirect lobbying also help Aer Lingus in legal proceedings.