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Rego Comments on Delta 'Red Coats'

At a time when air travel has become an increasingly do-it-yourself affair, with passengers making their own reservations, checking themselves in, and even toting their own food, Delta is bringing back a touch of the past: its once ubiquitous Red Coats. Considered a kind of super-agent who can handle virtually any task, the Red Coats' primary mission is to fix problems. The airline industry as a whole tends to fare poorly in customer satisfaction surveys, and Delta's visible attempt to improve service by bringing back the Red Coat agents could enhance its image and bottom line, marketing experts say. "Anything they can do to differentiate themselves will make the brand more salient and consumers more aware," says LOPO REGO, a marketing professor at The University of Iowa who specializes in the study of strategic marketing and customer satisfaction. "It's saying, 'We're different, and on top of that, we actually care for you because we have these agents that will solve anything on the spot.' "

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