Skywards offers double miles in November
SriLankan Airlines is offering double miles for Skywards members who fly Business Class on the airline's own services on selected routes in November.

This offer of double miles is in addition to the usual 25 percent Business Class bonus. Members of Skywards Family Bonus Programme travelling during the promotion period will be entitled to 20 percent of the total promotional Miles in addition to their usual Skywards Miles, the airline said. SriLankan's Business Class seats offer superior comfort with ample recline and leg space, lumbar adjustment and an electronic headrest and footrest.

Local advertisers battle for the mind
The battle for brand supremacy is not fought in the market but in the mind, Lilamani Dias Benson, the Co-Chairman of the Lowe LDB advertising agency, said last week.
Speaking at the monthly meeting of the Sunday Times Business Club, Benson said that a good advertisement should be able to trigger the consumer's imagination rather than deliver a lecture.

Emotion is a powerful tool in advertising, but the ad must focus on capturing the attention of the consumer's mind, which is the most important factor when deciding whether to make a purchase or not, she said in a presentation on "The battle in the mind."

Ad agencies must aim to create drama, intrigue and an element of surprise in their advertisements. "If an ad makes you think, that ad has won the battle in your mind," she added.

Advertisements that exaggerate the characteristics of a product are destined to end up in failure, Benson said. "People may be curious and this may result in a steep increase in sales at first, but after buying the product they may never buy it again."
Benson made an audio-visual presentation of international advertisements to explain the different facets of advertising techniques currently used in promoting international brands.

Sharing her experience in the field, she said that many local clients adopt negative attitudes when presented with innovative ideas and are often reluctant to give ad agencies the freedom to be creative.

"They often underestimate the viewers' intelligence and suggest to the ad agency how the advertising campaign should be conducted." She said that to conduct a successful advertisement campaign, companies must build a level of trust with their ad agencies in order to surpass all competitors and promote their products in the most effective way.

"A good ad costs no more than a bad ad, but at the end of the day it proves to be priceless," she added. Last week's presentation was held at the Trans Asia Hotel, sponsors of the Sunday Times Business Club. (SG)

New association for travel and tourism industry
The Travel Agents' Association of Sri Lanka (TAASL) and the Sri Lanka Association of Inbound Tour Operators (SLAITO) have teamed up to jointly form a new association called the Sri Lanka Association of Travel and Tourism (SLATT) bringing together all travel agents and tour operators under one umbrella.

The new association will help to streamline inbound and outbound sector activities to prevent a conflict of interest between them and to facilitate new provisions that would come into effect through the proposed Tourism Development Law, mainly the new Marketing Bureau, to promote Sri Lanka, the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce said in a statement. Although the new association will link the two main sectors, inbound and outbound, their activities will be run independently by two executive committees comprising 12 members per committee.

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