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This essay is going to describe the promotional campaign hold by Cathay Pacific, called ‘Senior Citizens Discount’, to high light the communication tactics and strategies and evaluate the effectiveness of two of the communication tools.  

Company information

Cathay Pacific is a well-known international airline and the largest airline in Hong Kong. The head office is located in Hong Kong. The scheduled passengers and cargo services are provided for over 200 destinations and 50 regions. The slogan of Cathay Pacific is ‘Traveling Well’ from 2014, which means that Cathay Pacific provide a likable service for all customers. Cathay Pacific has been awarded Airline of The Year 2014 and Best Airline Asia by Skytrax World Airline Awards in 2014. On the other hand, Cathay Pacific has several promotional campaigns for retention and seeking new customers every year, like Hong Kong Sevens and fancy car parade at eve.

Company mission and vision

The vision of the Cathay Pacific is to become the top airline in the globe. They do everything best in order to being the best. In order that consumers are pleasure to choose Cathay Pacific, all staffs offer the best class service to all customers.

Campaign information

Cathay Pacific has launched the promotional campaign called ‘Senior Citizens Discount’. To celebrate Senior Citizen’s Day in 2015 on 15th November, Cathay Pacific launches the discount ticket for elderly booking from 19th October to 23rd November 2015. The promotional campaign has been launched for 15 year in Senior Citizen’s Day period. All aged above 65 Hong Kong and Macau residents can enjoy the 25% discount for Cathay Pacific and Dragonair airlines tickets to go to a wide range of destinations. The elderly can enjoy the discount to buy first, business, premium economy and economy class flights and they can go to everywhere they like, namely London, Los Angeles, Singapore, and Sydney and so on. The departure period would be from 3rd November to 18th December 2015, from 27th December 2015 to 3rd February 2016 and from 12th February to 20th March 2016. The Asia Miles would be counted for this promotional campaign. The relevant taxes and surcharged would not be involved in this discount. The promotional campaign does not only promote on Cathay Pacific official website, but it also promotes in most of the travel agency. (Cathay Pacific, 2015)

The slogan of this promotional campaign in 2015 is ‘Reunite with the past and stay young at heart’. Arnold Cheng (2015), Cathay Pacific General Manager Sales PRD & Hong Kong, said that, based on the company slogan ‘Life Well Travelled’, he hoped elderly can enjoy their life and reunite to their friends by travelling in everywhere, where the campaign aims to thank for the elderly and provide a good travel to them. (Cathay Pacific, 2015)

‘Senior Citizens Discount’ has been used some of the promotional tools, namely advertising, sales promotion, direct marketing and personal selling. Advertising is used in the newspapers and internet in order to attract new customers and inform existing customers. Sales promotion is used due to 25% discount of fares for elderly. Direct marketing is used through direct mail to inform existing customers about the promotion campaign. Personal selling is used in B2B communication as travel agencies and group coupon websites promote the promotion campaign.

Marketing communication objectives

Direct objective: the customer acquisition increase from 10% to 15 % at the end of the year 2015 for targeted 65 to 75 years old customers.

Target audience

The target audiences of this promotional campaign are the elderly and the people, whose parents and grandparents are above 65 years old with Hong Kong or Macau residents. By demographic segmentation, the target audiences should be Hong Kong or Macau residents with high to low income with all gender. By geodemographic segmentation, the target audiences are in Hong Kong or Macau. Some of the elderly has purchasing power to buy fares to enjoy the service as they obtained the retirement pay and Mandatory Provident Fund. Also, most elderly have more leisure after they retired, so there is a chance for them to travel with inexpensive fares in this promotional campaign. On the other hand, as Chinese is focus on filial piety, the children help their parents to arrange a wonderful trip. Also, they may travel with their parents due to the promotional campaign.

Communication strategy

‘Senior Citizens Discount’ has been used two of the communication strategies, namely push and pull strategies.

Push strategy

Push strategy has been used in this promotional campaign. Cathay Pacific introduced the campaign by personal selling to the wholesalers, like travel agencies and the group coupon websites. In this step, Cathay Pacific informs those wholesalers about the advantages of the promotion campaign and gives them advices to promote the fares. The travel agencies and the group coupon websites had a sales promotion in their stores and official websites. The wholesalers advertised the campaign in newspaper as well. In this step, wholesalers persuade customers to buy fares. For the flow, the campaign was pushed down from Cathay Pacific to customers. Hence, this is a sample of push strategy. (Fill, 2006)

Pull strategy

Pull strategy has also been used in this promotional campaign. Cathay Pacific has advertised through mass media to make awareness to the public, like newspapers. By adverts by mass media, customers have awareness about the campaign and the demand can be generated. While the people were interested about the promotion campaign, they can ask for the travel agencies, group coupon websites or Cathay Pacific official websites. As the demand has been generated, while the wholesalers had a good selling in the promotional campaign, they can ask Cathay Pacific to offer more fares to them. However, the flow of the product is from Cathay Pacific to wholesalers and consumers. Therefore, as the promotional campaign flowed direct to the customers, pull strategy is used in this promotional campaign. (Fill, 2006)

Communication tools

‘Senior Citizens Discount’ has been used four communication tools.


Cathay Pacific has been promoted ‘Senior Citizens Discount’ to target audiences through mass media, like newspapers and internet. The use of advertising is mainly to inform target audience about the campaign of ‘Senior Citizens Discount’. By advertising framework (Fill, 2006), involvement framework is used due to the emotional content. In the adverts, there are three old people sitting together and the old photo sustained on the wall, whereas there are no rational information in the adverts. The elderly would induce the desired feeling by the adverts.



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