Digital Marketing

Q&A with Lillian Seyler, Hawaiian Airlines' Direct & Email Marketing Manager

In conversation with Lillian Seyler, Hawaiian Airlines' Direct & Email Marketing Manager, about how her marketing team uses automation to centralize messaging to travelers, ensuring customers quickly receive the most relevant pricing and travel information.

What are the main goals your team aims to achieve with your email program?

The email channel’s main objective is to keep our guests and valued HawaiianMiles members engaged with our brand. We also use the channel to keep our audiences informed of fare deals and program updates. We also have a guest-first focus, supporting communications to our booked guests including suggestions for their itineraries, upsell and upgrade opportunities, and important information regarding their trip.

How has the shift to more automated tools influenced your ability to understand and react to customer needs?

Leveraging more automated tools has allowed us to deliver more personalized content to our customers in a timely manner, including fare prices relevant to their location and/or based on their last search on our website.

Can you discuss the decision-making process behind the introduction of dynamic maps and live pricing features?

Our role as the hometown carrier of Hawai‘i is to educate potential visitors. We wanted to leverage the dynamic map to show how easily and quickly you can hop over to experience the different Hawaiian Islands once you are already in the state. For the live pricing feature, we want to always serve the lowest price point available to our subscribers as quickly as possible. Before live pricing, we manually updated price points for different segments which was inefficient, potentially no longer available for purchase, and had the potential for human error.

Looking forward, what new marketing technologies or strategies are you considering to further enhance customer engagement?

We are looking to enhance our usage with our CDP to be able to leverage data from different source systems to provide even more personalized and relevant content to our subscribers and guests.

Based on your experiences during the Maui wildfires and other urgent situations, what key pieces of advice would you offer to other marketing teams on effectively communicating through a crisis?

I would suggest ensuring there is a tight-knit centralized communications team that is aligned on messaging. The State of Hawaii's guidance evolved quickly and frequently through the Maui wildfire crisis and aftermath, so it was important to ensure all our messaging across channels was kept up to date and in sync.