Southwest Airlines

In its early days, Southwest Airlines embraced a quirky, personable brand image that contrasted with the corporate stodginess of bigger airlines. But when the company grew into one of the nation’s largest domestic carriers, it had to make a choice: either “join the club” and become more traditionally corporate in its image or find a way to maintain the company’s personable feel despite its significantly increased size. Southwest chose the latter, putting into motion a branding initiative that relied heavily on social media to distribute branded messaging and, more importantly, to connect directly with passengers. The move has preserved Southwest’s personality and personable feel. As of 2016, the airline possesses the industry’s best buzz score.‡ Answer the following questions based on the case study.

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