GSD&M Introduces Southwest to Philadelphia

DALLAS Southwest Airlines is entering the Philadelphia market with a ding.

To promote its new service there, which starts May 9, Omnicom Group’s GSD&M in Austin, Texas, has created three spots that center around the theme line that appears in all Southwest ads: “You are now free to move about the country” and the “ding” that sounds before the phrase.

The 30-second spots feature Philly citizens and cheerleaders of the Philadelphia 76er’s who express the kinds of things they expect from Southwest when it arrives. Their words are interspersed with others saying, “Ding.”

One spot consists of more than a dozen potential customers placed around the city who say things like, “You are now free to fly to Chicago without spending and arm and a leg,” “You are now free to use a frequent-flyer program that actually pays off” and “You are now free to have fun flying again.”

Another ad features airline employees, who share things like “You are now free to enjoy your flight and how little you pay for it,” “You are now free to get where you’re going on time” and “Free to sit anywhere in the cabin.”

The third spot simply features people just saying, “Ding.”

All three ads end with an employee directing a plane into the hangar as a voiceover says, “Southwest Airlines is bringing low fares and great service to Philly, which means you are now free to move about the country.”

The spots broke Monday in the Philadelphia area and appear as part of Southwest’s 76er’s and Philadelphia Flyers’ sponsorships. The campaign includes radio, newspaper, and guerilla marketing.

The Dallas-based airline spent $140 million on media through November last year, according to Nielsen Monitor-Plus.