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A simple idea to solve a not so simple travel problem.
Who doesn’t love the convenience of hassle-free, affordable, direct flights? Everybody loves the idea of visiting bucket-list travel destinations that most people only experience on their gram feed. This is especially true of the emerging young, affluent class who crave unique travel experiences and don’t mind if it generates a little envy in their social media circles either. The problem? Direct, reasonably affordable flights to bucket-list destinations simply don’t exist.
But why? The answer is simple: the two prevailing commercial models for airline travel — commercial carriers and charter airlines — simply don’t work. Commercial carriers plan their direct routes on hub and spoke models, daily demand, operational feasibility, and ultimately, financial performance. Unique bucket-list destinations have none of these qualities. Small charter carriers will have no problem getting you there, but be prepared to open your wallet and don’t plan on flying too far from home.
Enter Flügy. Flügy’s digital platform was originally built to allow travelers in any city to vote on trips or suggest new destinations for the members to vote up and ultimately book. While this was an ambitious vision for the future of Flügy, there was a challenge: How do you create awareness of the platform and establish relationships with the charter airlines carriers to make it all work? Without the traditional infrastructure, Flügy was essentially grounded before the first flight ever took place. In an unlikely meeting between Flügy founder and an executive at emerging large plane charter airline carrier GlobalX, a partnership was established to move the idea forward. GlobalX recognized that Flügy members could create consistent predictable demand without having to travel to the same destination multiple times a day, 7 days a week.
Soaring into Uncharted Skies
The GlobalX team contacted their friends at GlueIQ to get this innovative airline concept off the ground. “When Mark and Aaron came to us with the idea, we were really excited,” says GlueIQ partner Matthew Kujawa. “There was certainly something innovative and disruptive about Flügy, especially when, as a traveler, you start to envision all of the possibilities Flügy can unlock. We knew if it could scale, it would be a success.” The challenge was simple in concept — connect supply with demand — but difficult to achieve. “Flügy was like Uber, a great customer-centric platform that solves a real need, just no passengers and no drivers yet.”
Getting Down to Work
GlobalX leadership challenged Glue to prove out the concept by launching Flügy with a maiden flight that embodied all the qualities of the Flügy experience. If that could be achieved, new airline partners and investors to scale the brand would come next.
We got right to work, knowing that in an era marked by unprecedented disruptions, Flügy could emerge as a beacon of innovation, reshaping the travel industry landscape with a forward-thinking approach. Our product-market fit work confirmed that an industry disruptor like Flügy could strategically position itself at the intersection of unique market conditions — capitalizing on air travel market segmentation — catering to the demands of Fully Independent Travelers and the HENRY (high earning not yet rich millennials) segment seeking hard-to-reach destinations, exotic getaways, and nature-based experiences.
Next, we honed in on a number of unique value propositions empowering travelers — to curate their itineraries, discover unexpected destinations, and limit the time and money wasted to reach them — all while ensuring a stress-free airport experience and instilling confidence in a travel landscape fraught with unpredictable friction and traveler anxiety.
Setting the Stage for Disruption
To help establish their place as industry disruptors, we devised an approach that resonates with the evolving travel landscape. Leveraging partnerships was instrumental, activating diverse membership and loyalty bases to create unforgettable travel experiences. To that end, we partnered with peer brand Soho House to galvanize the right experience for the audience, and identified Canouan, a remarkable island in the Caribbean, as the perfect destination for their maiden flights and pilot program.
A meticulous media strategy fueled by luxury travel market research generates buzz and awareness through targeted outlets, with content marketing on social media emerging as a pivotal driver for growth. We adopted a nuanced approach to paid advertising, focusing on limited yet highly targeted campaigns to boost organic content and activities. This strategic blend not only aims to elevate brand visibility but also establish Flügy as a trailblazer in the travel domain. Through live-streaming, real-time engagement tactics, and a very direct and somewhat irreverant brand voice we’re making sure Flügy is showing up as different from the rest of the category — as it really is. This strategy and noteworthy execution was instrumental in proving the model, as Flügy has since been successful in attracting investors and raising capital, and we are currently working together to launch in 2024 fully.
As the architects of a new era in aviation, Flügy envisions a future where exploration knows no bounds and every journey becomes a personalized adventure. They aren't just flying; they’re soaring into uncharted skies, rewriting the rules, and bringing a breath of fresh air to an industry that's long been in need of it. GlueIQ is helping to ensure that Flügy becomes a vibrant and influential presence among travel marketing case studies in the industry, setting the stage for a future where disruption is synonymous with innovation and personalized exploration.