Enter Delta Air Lines. It has curated a ‘social magazine’ on Flipboard, the wildly popular iOS and Android reading app. Called ‘The Science of Sleep“, it is a compilation of sleep-related articles that advises travellers, like a concerned and caring friend would, on how to deal with insufficient sleep, particularly as a consequence of excessive travelling.
For example, one article gives ’12 simple tips to improve your sleep’. Another boasts of providing the connected traveller/friend with ‘A battle plan for jet lag’.
Many more such articles provide readers with valuable tips on how to better manage their sleep. All this and more, like all true friendships, comes at no cost. As of the writing of this article, the magazine had already gained about 10,000 readers and had curated over 60 articles that had witnessed over 130,000 page flips.
“Social Care” Encompasses Much More than Customer Service
The Connected Traveller today is increasingly tuned into his/her mobile devices with their plethora of apps, along with a near-ubiquitous internet connection at all times. As such, this not only presents a tremendous opportunity for brands to reach out and connect with these travellers, but customers too can now vent any frustrations with the product or the services immediately over their social networks. This can further cascade into negative impressions over the complainant’s social network and beyond.
Airlines need to use social media not just to connect with the traveller from a customer service perspective, but also to become a customer’s trusted friend in order to solve or mitigate the potential negative impressions. By doing so, an airplane transforms a customer into a social advocate: someone who so in love with your brand that he/she will go out of the way to promote it for you, without having to be compensated.
Rapid Evolution in Airline Marketing
Delta’s latest effort underlines the fact that it is one of the most socially caring airlines in the world. Not only does it perform excellent (and rapid) customer service on Twitter, its platform, @deltaassist, has been the guiding light for airlines around the world.
What is most clear, however, is that “Social Care” is an increasingly important aspect of Airline Marketing — after all, what better way to advertise your brand than by going out on a limb to improve passenger experience and making them more comfortable? Moreover, it now encompasses much more than pure “customer service”, or, simply, the resolution of problems. The limit to showing that your airline brand cares about its customers is restricted only by your imagination.
In fact, the growing importance of Social Care as an Airline Marketing trend was underscored in our recent report, the State of Airline Marketing 2013, in which it was one of the 8 major trends identified.
If you haven’t read it yet, please click below to download the free report.
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