Long-form articles are fading into the past. Yet the New Yorker occasionally offers deep dives on interesting marketing-relevant topics. I had some time on a recent plane ride, so I found time to read “Game of Thrones” (April 21, 2014). For this article, author David Owen researched what airlines are doing to “woo the one percent” — more specifically, how they design airline seats. (Full disclosure, I read this from the typical tourist class seat). Owen talked with design firm James Park Associates, about the work they have done for several airlines. To check out some images from Singapore Airlines Next Generation Business Class Cabin and Seat click here. It is a fascinating look at new product development to enhance the air travel experience.
This article might be used to provoke a discussion about how airlines differentiate their services. Who is the target market for this first class treatment? What could be done to woo the other 99%?