Toward the end of last month, I had the opportunity to speak at length with Kurt Stache, President, AAdvantage Marketing Programs. By just about any measure, AAdvantage is the leading airline mileage program. It boasts both the most members and the most program partners. And, through the sale of frequent flyer miles to those partners, it generates the most revenue for its parent company.
A leadership position can never be taken for granted, though, and I chided Stache for what I take to be American's relatively low-key marketing in recent years.
He took the point and mentioned, among other considerations, the fact that American's decision to make it through these trying times without resorting to a bankruptcy filing might have been a drag on its marketing efforts. And with a twinkle in his eye, he promised that American had some promotions keyed to the 25th anniversary of AAdvantage that would lift the spirits, and mileage balances, of AAdvantage members.
When American launched its "25 Deals in 25 Days Celebration" on May 1, the reason for Stache's confidence became clear. As promotions go, this one's a zinger.
Every day for the first 25 days of May, American will announce a new promotion or sweepstakes, most in conjunction with one or more of its many AAdvantage partners. A few examples: a 25-percent discount on select MileSAAver awards booked and ticketed by May 31 for travel between August 22 and November 8; a 25-percent bonus on miles earned for charges to the Citibank AAdvantage credit card during May, June, and July; and a chance to win a first-class trip for two on one or more oneworld airlines, up to 16 flight segments or 50,000 miles.
While the degree of generosity and creativity varies from partner to partner, the sheer number and diversity of the offers guarantee there's something that will appeal to everyone. Anyone NOT want to win that first-class oneworld trip?
Happy birthday, AAdvantage!