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ATL Business Chronicle

Column: Delta launches new local, national ad campaigns

By Maria Saporta
Friday, March 18, 2011

For the first time since 2007, Atlanta-based Delta Air Lines Inc. is launching a new national advertising campaign. The theme is “Keep Climbing.”

Simultaneously, the airline is launching a marketing campaign aimed specifically for an Atlanta audience by reaffirming its local ties to the community. The title of the Atlanta campaign is: “It’s more than headquarters. It’s home.” The ads also include a logo that says: “70 years as Atlanta’s hometown airline.”

Just one perk of the Atlanta celebration is that Delta has been sponsoring free valet service at Lenox Square and Phipps Plaza for the month of March.

“For the past two years, Delta’s focus has been where it rightfully belongs — on significantly improving Delta’s products and services,” said Tim Mapes, Delta’s senior vice president of marketing, in a statement. “We are excited to begin promoting the ways in which Delta has built, and continues to build, a better airline for our customers.”

The national “Keep Climbing” campaign, which began Sunday, March 13, includes two television commercials on the Weather Channel, Travel Channel, CNN, ESPN, MLB Network, HGTV, Bravo, and the Food Network, among others.

The airline also is running ads in national magazines, including Fortune, Fast Company, Forbes, BusinessWeek, The New Yorker, Vanity Fair, Food and Wine, Men’s Journal and Black Enterprise.

It also is buying print ads in The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, Financial Times and Atlanta Business Chronicle.

The Atlanta campaign also includes billboards, newspapers, radio spots and a new partnership with Braves TV (FSN and Peachtree TV) that will guarantee that Delta ads will air across all the season’s games.

Delta hired the New York ad agency Wieden+Kennedy last year to help create a new campaign once the airline’s merger with Northwest was completed. There was a soft launch of the campaign in New York last September.

“This is a multi-channel effort that will communicate our long-term promise of being the airline best positioned to address the daily challenges of flying,” said Chris Kelly Singley, Delta’s general manager of corporate communications.

Singley, however, would not disclose how much Delta is investing in its new campaign, which will be promoted in two waves — from March to June and from September to November.

Other marketing campaigns in Delta’s history have included: “Delta is Ready When You Are,” “You’ll Love the Way We Fly,” “We Love to Fly and It Shows,” “Good Goes Around,” and “Delta Gets You There With Care.”

Year Up

What a year it has been for Year Up Atlanta.

The nonprofit organization works with young people in various states of financial and emotional duress between the ages of 18 and 24 — providing a yearlong program aimed at giving them skills and experience that will lead to full-time employment or higher education.

In February 2010, Year Up Atlanta had just graduated its first class of 16 students with 14 of them now employed or in school.

Since then, Year Up Atlanta has added more classes and more students. It has just launched its fifth class with 80 students, and by September 2013, it will be at full capacity — serving 320 students a year.

The program includes a 21-week classroom phase and a 26-week internship program with 34 major local employers involved as partners. At the end of the internship, many of the students are hired by those employers.

Consider two recent graduates. Chenae Glaze, who had moved eight to 10 times in less than four years, had no family support and no marketable skills. After getting her Year Up instruction, she interned at CARE, and now she’s working there full time.

Then there’s Robert Casey, who would say he had to save up to be poor. He suffered from depression and had been unemployed for a year. Given his interest in gaming, he interned at Turner Broadcasting System Inc. and was offered a full-time job. He went from having a zero income to making $37,000 a year.

It’s stories like these that led to Cecil Conlee, an Atlanta business leader, to chair the local Year Up board and lead its fundraising campaign.

“It’s a program that works, and it’s a program that makes a difference,” Conlee said. “We don’t want to be a well-kept secret.”

Year Up Atlanta currently has a $4.5 million campaign goal that it needs to raise by the end of the year, and it already has raised $3.76 million.

“It’s a high-touch operation,” said Kweku Forstall, executive director of Year Up Atlanta. It has 25 employees, and it offers all sorts of services, from health care, counseling and job training to the students who have to sign a pledge that they are committed to the program.

Sam Pettway

The Association of Executive Search Consultants has presented one of its top awards to Sam Pettway, founding director of BoardWalk Consulting LLC.

Pettway received the AESC’s Eleanor Raynolds Award at its 2011 Americas Conference in New York City on March 9.

Boardwalk is an Atlanta-based search firm that works primarily in the nonprofit sector.


The Anti-Defamation League of Atlanta recently presented its jurisprudence awards to three Atlanta attorneys who have embodied its mission of securing justice and fair treatment for all.

The three were:

Steve Clay, a partner with Kilpatrick Townsend & Stockton LLP who was the founder of the Georgia Appleseed Project. Clay received ADL’s Lifetime Achievement Award;

Doug Ammar, executive director of the Georgia Justice Project, received the Elbert P. Tuttle Award; and

Haley Schwartz, founder and director of the Breast Cancer Project of the Atlanta Legal Aid Society, received the Stuart Eizenstat Young Lawyer Award.

Maria Saporta

Maria Saporta, Editor, is a longtime Atlanta business, civic and urban affairs journalist with a deep knowledge of our city, our region and state.  Since 2008, she has written a weekly column and news stories for the Atlanta Business Chronicle. Prior to that, she spent 27 years with The Atlanta Journal-Constitution, becoming its business columnist in 1991. Maria received her Master’s degree in urban studies from Georgia State and her Bachelor’s degree in journalism from Boston University. Maria was born in Atlanta to European parents and has two young adult children.


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