Posted in Marketing and Strategy Terms, Total Reads: 2105

Definition: Flighting

This is a scheduling technique for advertising, where advertisements are run at certain intervals instead of being continuously on air.

Flighting is used mostly in case of TV commercials, and by companies with limited budget. The time the ads are off TV, the product maybe advertised through comparatively cheaper media like radio or newspaper, or not at all. The intervals of advertising maybe regular or irregular depending on the type of product availability and/or demand. The key strategy is to advertise at a time when demand is expected to peak.

For example Vaseline advertises its petroleum jelly during winters when the demand is expected to rise. Similarly, there may be certain products whose demand is significant only during the beginning or end of a financial year, like investment schemes, or products whose demands are high at the end of month or every two weeks. The flighting ads for such products would be aired accordingly at regular time intervals. Similarly there may be a certain disease that suddenly becomes epidemic and/or life-threatening. In such a scenario cautionary methods are advertised in public interest. If the disease emerges again in the future, then the ads are aired again. But one may not already know if/when the issue would resurface, so the flighting for this is irregular. The period where there is no advertising is called hiatus.

Not only does this technique save money, but the impact is also high as there’s a burst of advertising in a short period of demand. The limitation might be that the consumers forget the product because it’s not continuously on air like the other products (which may not be an issue if the flighting is done right).

Flighting means advertising during a period, followed by a period with no advertising, followed by a second period with advertising of advertising activity. Flighting is useful when there is advertising budget constraint, the purchase cycle is longer or the products are seasonally found and needed.


The above graph clearly depicts the Flighting technique of advertising. Advertisement period is followed by period of no ad again followed by ad period and so on.


Hence, this concludes the definition of Flighting along with its overview.

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