SAS wanted to position itself as an exclusive airline and distinguish itself from the low-price competition. Therefore, SAS teamed up with the Danish ELLE team to obtain added value from the ELLE brand – one of the strongest brands in the world in the magazine sector. In addition, the ELLE brand has a strong online and social-media presence, and the readers are outstanding trendsetters, which was important to SAS.

January is a month when many people book trips, which was why SAS wanted a different and clear presence to capture the attention of both existing and new customers. Based on ELLE’s thorough knowledge of the stylish modern woman, and in close collaboration with SAS, the ELLE Travel universe came into being. The collaboration was exclusive, as SAS was the only airline that took part.


The ELLE Travel universe targeted discerning, quality-conscious urban women based on an insider’s guide perspective with travel guides, articles, fashion and beauty.

An independent magazine – ELLE Travel – was created. SAS was integrated into the magazine in several different creative ways. The cover was embellished by a stylish woman walking on the tarmac in front of an SAS airliner. An eight-page fashion series using the same model was shot at Copenhagen Airport, on board SAS aircraft and in SAS lounges, thereby integrating SAS in an elegantly underplayed manner. A two-page notes-based advertorial followed the fashion series, providing readers with knowledge about everything they didn’t know about SAS – from customer loyalty programmes and Spotify playlists to new seats on long-distance routes, Gay Pride and the collaboration with the Noma restaurant and Mikkeler Beer. Finally, SAS co-sponsored a competition to win a trip with SAS and a trolley, cosmetics bag and shopper from By Malene Birger. Travel guides to various destinations in the ELLE Travel magazine also included a link to SAS. All of this was relevant content for readers and value-based communication with the purpose of heightening the value through the branding partnership SAS x ELLE. The magazine was published on 28 December, which made it highly relevant in January, the month when SAS wanted extra brand awareness.

To ensure high circulation – and thus exposure to a large number of readers – ELLE Travel was published in a twin pack with ELLE, both for subscribers and single-copy sales, and was distributed in SAS lounges and on selected air routes. It was also part of SAS’ efforts to retain existing SAS customers.

Digitally, the campaign focused on two platforms: and ELLE’s Facebook page. An ELLE Travel tab was created on and, throughout the month of January, featured a travel theme that was fully focused on inspiring travel articles. SAS was integrated into these initiatives with eight advertorials, including everything from travel guides to selected big cities, SAS Remap, a competition, news and the stewardess’s insider tips.


In January, the ELLE Travel tab was visited 102,000 times, 31,000 of which were to SAS’ advertorials. Facebook posts in the campaign had a reach of 180,000 and the magazine was distributed to more than 107,000 readers. The unique benefits for SAS were communicated through valuable content aimed at ELLE’s readers and digital users/followers. Overall, a strong, innovative presence was ensured throughout the month of January, which confirmed SAS’ position as an exclusive airline and told the story of how SAS stands out from its low-priced competitors.

The campaign won two awards at the Native Advertising Awards 2016: silver in the “Best Use of Print Media” category and bronze in the “Most Creative Native Advertising Campaign” category.