The challenge with the aviation industry is that the mainstream audience is not aware of the existence of uncommon niches. For example, the private and business aviation market. However, they seem to know about commercial airlines. But on the other side, it might seem that private or charter aviation kind of sells on its own. Still the competition is growing and kicking. Don’t forget that many capable individuals and corporate businesses might not even know that such a service is even an option.
In such a situation, it is essential to create an online presence through social media by dedicatedly promoting the aviation industry. It’s important to recognize any shifts and adapting to them accordingly. In simpler terms, work your best to keep up with the whimsical trends of social media. This is irrespective of the nature of business.
When a brand or a business breaks the barrier of traditional marketing and advertising to opt for social media, in an indirect way, they’re doing a lot more than attracting new customers. Being active on social media makes businesses appear humane and friendly. Create a voice for the brand to make people feel as if they’re interacting with a person. In turn, it lets businesses talk with their followers and build a loyal community.
The most vital benefit of social media is that it is a cost-effective part of your aviation marketing strategies. And companies could invest little to no amount and still be successful at the game.
Aviation Marketing Strategies
Here’s what your small business can learn from the airline business about using social media for online presence:
1. Importance Of Social Listening
There’s more to social media marketing than creating an image and posting it with a compelling copy. This is where the concept of social media listening comes in. That’s according to Sprout Social. Social listening is tracking online conversations of niche audiences and analyzing their words, phrases and style of interaction. And then leverage them to create content for your target audience.
Of course for effective implementation, companies will need to put effort and resources into tracking and discovering what’s happening on all their social media platforms.
Regina Luttrell, associate professor of PR and social media at Eastern Michigan University & author of the book Social Media: How to Engage, Share, and Connect said that for successful social media execution it is vital that businesses in this age know who is retweeting something, who is sharing an image, who is commenting and who is direct messaging.
2. Turning Social Media To a Money Minting Machine
How cool it would be if all your social media campaigns are creating broader conversations and letting users tap into your social media’s messaging? But how to turn this engagement into them doing business with your brand and eventually you get a return of your investment.
From a social media perspective, a customer is far more important than the initial spent your business made. To calculate the ROI, a lot of factors need to be accounted for, like future purchases and the influence of the individual on social media. Particularly in the travel business, developing customer loyalty and effective social media strategy goes a long way.
On her website, Lutrell recommends companies follow an 80-20 model for their social media. The 80 accounts for posts and content that is useful and add value to a follower’s life, while the remaining 20 could be promotional content required for self-flexing of the brand.
3. Providing Real-Time Updates
With an increasing amount of natural calamities causing a disturbance in different geographics, last-minute delays, cancellations, unexpected layovers, and timing changes are bound to happen.
In such cases, it is extremely vital that airline companies provide their customers with timely updates and information regarding the expected weather conditions. Such information lets passengers make proactive decisions and stay prepared.
For example, informing passengers on the rains at the destination might help them as they could carry any necessary accessories like umbrellas or raincoats beforehand.
Twitter, by far has proven to be essential for airline businesses to provide such updates, and in most cases, companies prefer using separate accounts for tweeting last-minute updates.
4. Curating Social Media Validation
Airlines need to be careful not just about what they’re posting, but also what other people are saying about their brand on social media. One bad tweet or a Facebook post about the airline brand could drastically ruin their business while one positive comment could generate ripples of inbound bookings and inquiries.
The transparency on social media could immediately expose the knotholes of a business. Alternatively, business could use these user-generated reviews and feedbacks to improve their services in operations and customer experience.
5. Pushing Cheaper Travel Fares
This is exactly like malls and textile shops distributing brochures regarding clearance sales. Many airlines push out cheap flight and family vacation deals at the last moment. This is done through social media platforms. On the other hand, private jet travel services provide an option to book empty leg flights. These flights are basically returning flights already paid by the customers who took them to reach their destination, and fares of empty leg flights are relatively cheap. Paramount Business Jets is one such service provider and they frequently update such information on their social media platforms.
There are many individuals and travel agencies. And they deliberately wait and refresh their Twitter feed to get hands-on. These deals enable them to fly cheap.
Social Media for the airline industry is indeed exciting. And every company seems to know what they’re doing. Most importantly, it is crucial for brands to understand the value of social media engagement. Think about the value for customers and potential customers.
This is somewhere between improving customer service and building a loyal user base. Social media has become a huge benefit to the airline industry. It make airlines seem more approachable. And it shows no signs of an unforeseen layover stop anytime soon.