Thursday, May 28, 2009

Exceeding Expectations

I recently had the opportunity to fly Turkish Airlines. Granted, the airline was not my first choice, but the price was right, so I decided to give it a whirl.

After enduring all kinds of jokes from family and friends, I decided not to check any luggage – I was making a connection in Istanbul – and fly as light as possible. Since I was traveling alone, I figured I didn’t have much to lose and, so what if the planes were a bit older?

I was pleasantly surprised. The cabin crew couldn’t do enough to ensure my comfort and, almost to a fault, kept offering drinks on the long haul.

Compare Turkish, about which I knew nothing, to Continental (where I enjoy Elite Platinum status) which practically screams how great they are. On Continental, I get the feeling the crew is doing me a favor by taking my money.

What’s the PR lesson? Manage expectations. Granted, there are times clients need to hear your bravado, but, to paraphrase a motivational speaker I once heard: Under-promise and over-deliver.

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