Airlines Turn to Social Media to Learn more about Customers

A new Australian company called Local Measure has made it possible to allow corporate clients to conducted searches based on GPS location, opposed to keyword. The technology introduced by Local Measure monitors conversations on social media websites to see what people are talking about. Airlines have started to capitalize on this new technology to learn more about their customers.

For example, Qantas customer care teams are notified whenever a customer posts a picture to Instagram from one of ten Qantas airport lounges. According to the head of digital communication at Qantas, Jo Bundy, This technology “allows us to pinpoint customer feedback to a specific location. If someone raises an issue, it gives out lounge staff the ability to step in and resolve the problem [in real time].”

Qantas has been highly satisfied with the results of utilizing this technology and others have been watching their pilot program carefully. The CEO of Local Measure, Jonathan Barouch, asserts that other airlines will also be implementing their technology in the near future. According to Barouch, “[our technology] helps our clients better understand what people are thinking about their experience.” In addition to responding to problems in real time, the information collected will also allow them to anticipate potential problems.

KLM Royal Dutch Airlines currently has 130 employees that are charged with monitoring multiple social media platforms in order to immediately address comments, problems or questions posted by KLM customers. KLM also uses the information they collect online to create new products and services, address the anticipated needs of customers and improve their overall customer experience.

According to Martijin van der Zee, the senior vice president of e-commerce for Air France – KLM, the changes being made based on social media monitoring are things he would have argued were irrelevant if presented to him prior. However, they are the changes KLM receives messages about on a daily basis.

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