In 2011 'The World's Favourite Airline' was in trouble, having filed its biggest-ever annual loss of £500m in 2010. Customers were joking that BA was shorthand for ‘bloody awful’. The British Airways brand had lost its focus and was using in ruthless cost cutting to try to stay competitive. In the eyes of the customer, the brand was constantly on sale. Once a category leader of customer service, perceptions of quality had fallen and rival Virgin Atlantic was increasing in popularity.
A new initiative was launched, with a spend of more than £5 billion over 5 years on the airline's products and services, including new aircraft, better cabins and improved technology. To enable senior management to spearhead the initiative effectively, there was a need to re-engage them about the history of the brand and the role of design in its success. Richard Stevens, cofounder of forpeople had written a new brand narrative and core principles, and asked me to express this visually through print and digital media.
The new design language in a book and a set of posters that were also translated into interactive format, and used as reference and inspiration by senior management and design and branding teams throughout British Airways. The British Airways story of innovation and commitment to enduring design principles and evolving customer and business needs, was called Blueprint. A reminder of how Flying that made you feel special and good design something that strikes a perfect balance between purpose, people and context.