Is Ryan Air making a successful brand transformation?

To celebrate St Patrick’s Day we feature Ryan Air, the well recognised Irish brand from the travel industry, headed by CEO, Michael O’Leary. It is attempting to transform itself from an edgy, low-cost budget airline into one that is more service orientated to meet changing customer expectations in the market. After all, service is a good way to differentiate a brand in a highly competitive travel market.

Gone is the cheap, garish yellow of the previous logo replaced with a more professional blue and the introduction of the celtic harp or cláirseach as it is called in Irish.

However, changing the logo and colours is the easy part.

The most difficult bit is to change the culture and values of Ryan Air itself, especially when their leader has a very strong personality and can be so out-spoken. Which sets the tone for the whole company by what he says and more importantly what he does every day. If he doesn’t change his behaviour then there will be no hope of repositioning the brand.

Despite the business intent, it is interesting that on the Ryan Air website today, the 17 March, it is featuring a strong sales message based on flights from £17 and references the six nations rugby union championship. Transformation takes time but it also takes focus.

However, as a specialist design studio that helps international companies build their brands, engage their people and grow their business, we are surprised at how many companies don’t understand how much of the branding process is much deeper than simply changing their logo and colours. When used properly it is a powerful tool to transform any business by changing the culture and personality in order to maintain their relevance.

If you would like objective help and advice with your branding then find out how we can help and get on touch.

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