Evaluation Towards Potential Improvements of the Full Service Carrier Product Offering Through the Mindset of Millennial Consumers - Investigation on Carrier’s Product and Brand Equity Enhancement: Case Study on Scandinavian Airlines (SAS)

Gintaré Maciulyté

Student thesis: Master thesis


This particular master thesis project is written within the purpose to evaluate current phenomenon of passengers redistributing among different product offering carriers in the airline industry. To be precise, project starts with the notion of currently undergoing modifications of both the low-cost (LCCs) as well as full-service carriers’ (FSCs) product offered for its passengers – owing to the shifts of consumption patterns of the aging generations – from Gen X to Gen Y consumers – there has been a tendency of current consumers more and more leaning towards more affordable however simultaneously positively evolving packages of the budget airlines, thus potentially creating a threat for profitable long-run existence of the legacy carriers. Following previously described trend of the millennials shifting towards more affordable means of air-travel, the thesis seeks to discover and explore various value gaps in the FSC offering, aiming to establish strong product as well as brand differentiation from the budget competitors.
Research stage of the project starts by exploring different secondary data sources on the chosen target segment of millennial consumers – analysis of socio-economic factors and its influence on
consumer behavior, detailed study on millennials’ demands for purchasing products and their attitudes for air-travel consumption. Additionally, in-depth interviews are chosen as a primary data
collection technique that, in conjunction with selection of Scandinavian Airlines (SAS) as a welldefined case example, are expected to generate more specific results of value gaps for the chosen legacy carrier.
In terms of more specific analysis, besides different qualitative theoretical perspectives and frameworks used throughout the thesis, more detailed analysis starts with the use of CustomerActivity Cycle (Vandermerwe, 2000) as the main model to spot potential SAS product enhancements that would create closer fit to the needs of millennial consumers while also recognizing the benefits of the value stimulated from brand development techniques, thus indepth examination of Keller’s Customer-Based Brand Equity Pyramid (1993) being incorporated. Taking all into consideration, despite produced analysis and suggestions to be implemented in the future product of the legacy carrier such as SAS being an interpretation of a researcher given the data collected, the results, however, are believed to serve as solid guidelines for more precise problem solving of the matter.

EducationsMSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2017
Number of pages145