Inbox Insider: E-mail creates buzz

E-mail is a great tool to generate buzz. And that is just what JetBlue did with it last week. On Thursday, the airline sent out a special deal that seemed too good to be true, through press releases, e-mails and partner e-mails like the Travel Zoo Newsflash, an e-mail for Travel Zoo subscribers who want to receive special sale alerts.

The e-mail offered subscribers JetBlue flights from New York to San Francisco for $14 a way. To stress that this was not some kind of farce, the e-mail read “This is NOT a mistake, but there is one catch: the $14 fares are only for travel today through April 8.”

Within just an hour of getting the e-mail, the sale flights were gone. But in the meantime, the Internet was buzzing about JetBlue. I was forwarded this e-mail, even though I had already gotten it myself. I saw Facebook posts, Twitters and blogs about it. It was on SF Gate and ABC San Francisco and in USA Today. Not a bad PR push. I even got a text message from a friend asking for advice on where to go camping near San Francisco.

While the deal was very limited and sold out quickly, the airline was able to use e-mail to get people thinking and buzzing about their brand. Not a bad way to fill some seats at the last minute and get people thinking about trips that they’d like to take and looking for places that they might go camping. Because after all, once you get someone excited about the idea of travel, they might be willing to pay the expected cost. I mean no one really expects a flight from one coast to another to be $14. That is less that the cab ride from New York City to John F. Kennedy airport. And as the cost of flying very reasonable these days due to economic pressures, it is a good time to fly.

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