In this month's column, I would like to introduce you to a new advertising campaign we have launched at American Airlines. One of the reasons I think you will enjoy it is that it's much more about you, our customers, than it is about us. In addition to a new campaign, we have a new slogan: "We know why you fly." Let me assure you that we have not been reading your e-mails or listening in on your phone calls. The fact is, as you sit reading this column, we probably don’t know exactly why you have taken this particular trip. But what we do understand is that the work we do and the services we provide have been woven into the fabric of your life.

A generation ago, air travel was a luxury enjoyed by the relative few. Today, it is an indispensable part of life for millions. The destination listed on your itinerary today may be New York, or Miami, or Boston, but we know your real destination — the reason you are flying — is an important business meeting, your high school reunion, a family celebration, or some other unique event. Your flight is more than just a flight — it is a way to be where you want, with whom you want, doing what matters most to you.

The connectivity we make possible holds our mobile society together, and helps keep the ever-more-globalized economy humming. But while you might say our activities are — on both a personal and macro level — a means to a greater end, what we provide is a lot more than transportation between points A and B. The American Airlines brand has come to represent certain values: safety, reliability, courtesy, professionalism, respect, and empathy, to name just a few. Those values are embodied in the men and women of our company. They are the stars of our show, so we have put them front and center in our advertising.

As the world’s largest airline, American has certainly not been immune to the unprecedented series of storms that have enveloped our industry during the past three years. But throughout this period of rapid and difficult change, the ingenuity, spirit, and collective wisdom of our people have been both our secret weapon and our saving grace. One of the great things about a company that has been around nearly 80 years — and that today flies more people more places than any other airline — is the fact that our people have seen and done it all. In the months and years to come, we will continue to tap into their unique perspectives and insights on our business and, especially, on our customers — on what you value most and on how we can deliver it better than anybody else. That, in a nutshell, is what "We know why you fly" is all about.

I hope you will keep an eye out for our new advertisements. In the meantime, thank you for flying with us today.

Picture of Gerard Arpey

GERARD J. ARPEY
Chairman & CEO
American Airlines