Stephen Joyce at Tnooz has written an excellent post about Canadian airline WestJet and how it is using Twitter to great effect for customer communications.
Key points covered include:
- Before you plunge in, understand your customer service culture and how/whether social media fits in.
- Next, develop a clear strategy for issues like training, procedures and investment. WestJet thought it all through first, even though it meant delaying its Twitter launch for a while.
- Handle Twitter or Facebook with the same professionalism you would a customer phone call.
- Use social media to promote things of widespread interest, like promotions and special offers. WestJet shows how successfully this can be done.
- Handle exchanges with individual customers offline or as (private) Direct Messages, as in this recent WestJet tweet: “@maxcameron Hi Max, sorry to hear about the delay. Do you mind following us so that I can DM you?”
- Come up with creative ways to encourage customer interactions and brand loyalty – in WestJet’s case, ‘Winglet Wednesday’ and the ‘Declare your Love’ Valentines contest.
WestJet is an excellent case study, not only for airlines and travel businesses, but almost any organisation.