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Ryanair is one of the most unique and successful low-cost airlines in Europe. Despite having so many negative associations, it still remains the leader in this market by having the biggest share of customers and flights (European Low Fares Airline Association, 2008). Hence, what are Ryanair brand key secrets making it so successful? The Keller‘s Customer-Based Brand Equity Model incorporated with Pillars of the Brand were used to make an analysis which helped to answer this question. Ryanair brand was analysed according to such components as brand awareness, brand associations (Pillars of the Brand) and brand image. Brand awareness includes the performance of both brand recall and recognition. Evaluating Pillars of the
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2007). These values can be considered as primarily functional and experiential benefits but not emotional and self expressive benefits.
Ryanair’s emphasis on offering the cheapest price has been supported throughout primary and secondary research conducted. Focus groups showed that a majority of people felt that Ryanair was offering the lowest fares (see Appendix_ Q5). Hence it can be said this value is powerfully and effectively communicated to customers.
Questionnaire responses also showed that those who would choose to fly with Ryanair often mentioned that it is easy to book on their website (Appendix _ Q8). Other than this there was no evidence to suggest customer’s felt Ryanair provided good customer service. To the contrary Ryanair is seen from its brand personality and overall brand image as providing poor service. This may highlight an interesting downside to trying to balance two key values. The consequence for Ryanair emphasising on cost cutting to offer the lowest prices is the difficulty in improving its perceptions regarding customer service and quality.
As Ryanair considers its expansion in pursuit of achieving its goals of making air travel free it must ensure that it is able to keep its core brand values. This is because it is them that create Ryanair’s brand

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