Transport Airlines

Eight ways airlines are using social media to humanize marketing

@SamShankman

Apr 30, 2013 1:18 am

Skift Take

Tweets at passengers and sponsoring food trucks helps airlines soothe flyers bothered by crowded flights and hefty fees.

— Samantha Shankman

Evolving Strategies in Travel Ad Tech and Bookings

 / YouTube

Lufthansa exercised great timing when it released a video promoting its lie-flat seats at the same time planking became an Internet meme. / YouTube


Frequent flyers and travel humbugs say air travel has never been more inhumane. Cramped seats, sky-high fees, and brisk staff make some travelers feel more like cattle than a valued customer.

Airlines, however, are working hard to leverage social media in an effort to humanize their marketing efforts and connect with the everyday customers.

The State of Airline Marketing report, produced by Airlinetrends.com and Simpliflying, examines eight effective initiatives airlines are undertaking. All involve social media as airlines tap into its power to connect and accelerate brand awareness around the world.

Social media has blurred the barriers between the corporate inner workings of these companies and the harried frustrated business travelers that they serve. This has brought about a renewed focus on real people, both passengers and staff, and content is created to being shared that relates to real flyers. Airlines are also showing the behind-the-scenes workings of their operations and the people that make the airline run.

Social media also blurs distinctions between producers and consumers: Airlines receive valuable ideas and input while also empowering and engaging their customers. A few of the success stories:

  • Lufthansa promotes its lie-flat seats by riding the momentum of the “planking” craze.
  • Air New Zealand uses Bear Gryllis in a safety video that then goes viral.
  • Delta creates a special @DeltaAssist Twitter account to help travelers in need.

Read through the full report below to see how airlines are also taking their brand offline to create meaningful relationships with customers.

Download (PDF, 1.61MB)

Tags: , ,

Follow @SamShankman

Next Up

More on Skift

4 Tourism Trends We’re Tracking at Skift This Week
5 Digital Trends We’re Tracking at Skift This Week
How Pharrell’s ‘Happy’ Is Spawning Amazing Travel Videos From Around the Globe
How to Find the ‘Holistic Traveler’ Trapped in Your Data

We're the Moneyball of the Travel Industry

We know what's coming next in travel. Subscribe to the newsletter and get all the goodness in your inbox daily.