Malaysia Airlines creates its first online course with OTT - and achieves 150 per cent of annual KPIs within three months
Malaysia Airlines wanted to share information about their products updates and new services with a community of agents in a quick and easily accessible way, in time for the launch of its new A350 service.
The airline worked with OTT to create its very first online training course, MH Expert, which was launched and promoted to travel professionals in the beginning of 2018. The course consists of three modules - Fleet and Airline, Make it Malaysia and Key Routes and Reasons to book. Each module has a test for travel professionals to complete and a prize draw which can be entered by qualifying agents who achieve a score of over 80 per cent.
The course outlines the Malaysia Airlines fleet, new aircraft, the route network and the attractions of the destinations it flies to. Competitions and incentives are used to attract travel professionals to take the course, which range from fam trip prizes and voucher incentives to Liverpool Football Club ticket giveaways. Since the launch, the course has achieved 150 per cent of its annual key performance indicators for course passes in the first three months.
Richard De Villa, Marketing Manager for Malaysia Airlines, said: “This was the first time we launched an online training course for travel agents. We had not previously used online training for agents but we had wanted to develop a platform on OTT and ensure that our products reach the travel trade. The aim was to promote the product and make all the travel partners aware of how to sell it and what’s new.”
Read on to find out how Malaysia Airlines used OTT to:
- Educate travel professionals about Malaysia Airlines’ products, routes, and destinations using a course which takes no more than 15 minutes to complete
- Market their course to OTT’s community of over 90,000 UK travel professionals - and the three reasons why Malaysia Airlines uses competitions and offers to incentivise them
- Keep agents up-to-date with new products and services with the addition of new course sections or information throughout the year
Educating travel professionals about Malaysia Airlines’ routes, fleet and destinations using a course which takes no more than 15 minutes to complete
Destination modules use stunning imagery of cities and islands to give a flavour of the country’s offer, while the route network and fleet modules use graphics and videos to illustrate the aircraft and route network.
Malaysia Airlines aims to pack as many details into its online course as it can within the shortest possible course completion time. The course makes use of visual content to convey information to course participants.
Richard De Villa explains: “When we launched the course, we didn’t just want to launch an online brochure. We knew the audience wouldn’t want to spend 30 minutes completing our course - they would rather spend that 30 minutes earning money for themselves and their companies. We devised a course which could also realistically be completed in 10 or 12 minutes, but would give agents the knowledge of all our services, products, fleet and the destinations that we serve. We wanted to make it fun and presented it in a very visual way.”
“The course aims to educate agents on our fleet and our new aircraft - the all new A350,” says Richard. “It also gives an overview of the rest of the fleet, our network and making them more aware of the destinations we fly to.”
As well as promoting the airline, the course also gives travel professionals a taste of the beauty and rich cultural heritage of Malaysia. “As the national carrier we are highlighting this fantastic destination and why people should go. The more they know about the wonderful places we fly to, the more they are able to sell it to their customers. We are currently promoting free side trips to Peninsular Malaysia, either on the way to or on the way back from Australasia.”
Three reasons why Malaysia Airlines uses competitions and incentives to market their course to OTT’s community of over 90,000 UK travel professionals
Malaysia Airlines uses OTT eshots to promote and incentivise agents to take their newly launched course and to inform them of new product updates. The eshots are distributed into the inboxes of thousands of UK travel professionals.
Competitions and incentives are also used to encourage travel professionals to complete the course and actually book customers on MH. Travel professionals are automatically entered into the draw on completion of all the modules. Prizes include signed Liverpool FC shirts, football match tickets and fam trip places. Giveaways are also used to convert travel professionals’ newly gained knowledge into bookings and these have included £100 shopping vouchers for every flight booking made. Email prompts are built into the OTT course system, encouraging travel professionals who start the course but don’t complete in one session to go back in and finish it later.
Richard explains: “We have made extensive use of incentives to promote bookings. We use OTT as a tool to reach out to a substantial database and get their interest through initiatives such as our fam trip competition. Malaysia Airline is the Official Global Airline Partner for Liverpool FC, so we leverage that partnership to provide tickets and signed shirts as prizes.”
Richard explains the three reasons why organising competitions through OTT has been a winning strategy for Malaysia Airlines:
“We will always include ongoing competitions for our courses:
- To encourage agents to complete the course
- To use it as a tool for agents to keep abreast of Malaysia Airlines’ products and services with great prizes to win, such as Liverpool tickets or fam trip prizes
- And finally to use it as a resource platform containing the information they need to book, including new fare products, fleet information and routes among others.”
Keeping agents up-to-date with new products and services with the addition of new course sections or information
Malaysia Airlines continues to use its OTT online course as a tool to keep agents up-to-date with news and developments from its network and products. Since the course was launched in the first quarter of 2018, the airline has added flights to Brisbane to its network.
Richard explains: “We didn’t just want agents to go through MH Expert once. MH Expert course is constantly updated with new fare products, routes and even new videos on our fleet and destinations. For example, we launched a new flight to Brisbane on June 20 and information on this is included on MH Expert.”
OTT will be helping brands to deepen their engagement with travel professionals who have previously completed their courses with the roll out of a new GDPR compliant email functionality in the last quarter of 2018. This will allow Malaysia Airlines and other travel brands to email agents who have already taken their online courses with their latest product or service updates.