Learning from the Southwest microsite

Learning from the Southwest microsite

Yesterday brought some pretty big news in the airline industry as low-fare giant, Southwest Airlines, announced that it is acquiring AirTrain Airways. This was particularly good news for us here in Memphis - we've been hoping for Southwest to enter our market for a while now (driving to Little Rock or Nashville pretty much negates the whole low-fare thing). As we did some poking around on the Internet yesterday to find out more about the deal, we came across the new microsite (LowFaresFarther.com) dedicated to the acquisition and thought it was really well executed.

Microsites are excellent for providing information centered around an event, initiative or focus that is separate from your organization's core "product." This is illustrated rather nicely by the Southwest.com and LowFaresFarther.com screenshots below.

Southwest.com LowFaresFarther.com

Southwest.com, as illustrated above, is focused around its product and its competitive advantages: flights for the former, low-fares and "bags fly free" for the latter. Of course, Southwest.com needs to talk about the acquisition, but you can clearly see that providing the type of information necessary doesn't really fit within the context of the Southwest Airlines website. Thus, they created LowFaresFarther.com to promote the acquisition, address stakeholders directly, answer inevitable questions (bags will continue to fly free!) and generally let the public easily browse information about the acquisition without having to fit it all in a navigational/design structure that doesn't make sense (e.g. trying to put all of the same information on Southwest.com).

Microsites aren't just for companies either. We've seen churches create microsites for sermon series, ministry initiatives and more. Non-profits regularly have large events that could be best promoted through the execution of a microsite. The sky is the limit when it comes to your communication potential on the web, and if you need some help deciding the best way to execute an idea - give us a shout. We'll be more than happy to lay out some options and make recommendations. In the meantime, be looking forward to cheaper flights from Memphis (and lots of other locations)!

Posted by Matt Roberts at 8:39 AM