Connecting with Travelers: How Airlines Are Using Content and Social Media to Their Advantage

July 8, 2017

By ANA staff

Of the industries that were disrupted by the social and mobile revolutions, the travel industry was near the top of the list. Even though the reasons that people travel have not changed, the purchase journey of the traveler has been utterly transformed. Nowadays, consumers are increasingly turning to mobile and social media to search for destinations, brainstorm itineraries, compare flight fares, and reserve hotel rooms. According to eMarketer’s latest forecast on digital and mobile travel, this year, approximately 101 million Americans will research a trip online via their smartphones and 57.5 million will use their smartphones to book a trip.

 

To keep up with how consumer behavior is changing, airlines across the world have stepped up their digital marketing games. They are using website content, influencers, user-generated content, apps, and social media to create irresistibly sharable stories that engage customers, build loyalty, and promote their benefits and services. Check out how these three airline brands have harnessed the power of content and social media to connect with digital consumers.

  • Wanna Get Away: In late 2016, Southwest Airlines brought back its “Wanna Get Away” campaign. The activation was based on the idea that when people had awkward moments, they could get away with deals from Southwest. The new campaign also gave people a chance to get away with the #WannaGetAway contest. It invited people to submit embarrassing moments on social media for a chance to win a dream vacation to an island off the coast of Belize. 
  • #MyStopover: Icelandair’s Stopover program allows passengers to visit the continent for up to seven nights with no additional fees when traveling to more than 20 destinations in Europe. To promote this feature, the airline launched a content marketing campaign that included a contest. Using the hashtag, #MyStopover, Icelandair encouraged travelers to share their stopover experiences to win their very own, tailor-made Stopovers in Iceland.
  • 12,000 Mini Miracles: WestJet wanted to take a new approach to content marketing by creating a movement through thousands of acts of kindness rather than one single act. For the 2015 holiday season, every WestJet employee was encouraged to perform one “mini miracle,” or random act of kindness, and submit it via social channels with the hashtag #WestJetChristmas.