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Why SouthWest Airlines Gets It

Jenny Wolfram
Nov 11, 2014 8:38:53 AM

Numerous case studies have been written about social media and social customer care. A new industry that has evolved with the growing popularity of social networks.

Now more than ever people are reaching out to brands on social media if they have a problem they’d like you to solve, or simply to say “Awesome, you guys rock!”.

So as a brand, you’d better be listening!

Research performed by Edison Research has shown that 42% of customers expect an answer from their favorite brand after they have asked them a question on social media.

Timing is of the essence.

One industry that is completely reliant on timing is the airline industry. Think about it. I would definitely hate to be on a plane that is 5 minutes late from leaving the tarmac when the next plane is about to land on that same tarmac. Not to mention how the following delays would effect on customer experience! Mayhem would ensue.

The same goes for customers reaching out to Southwest Airlines on social media. SWA is to my knowledge one of the first companies in the world to have built out a “Social Media Command Center”. At any given time SWA will have 9 people working in this command centre. Closely monitoring twitter feeds and Facebook timelines, and correlating them to actual flight data on the screen next to the other feeds. Eagerly typing and answering to @SWA mentions ,which can be a whopping 3,100 mentions a day(!), the 9 social care representatives, as they are called, are truly there for SWA customers. Not only can they distinguish between customers who are about to be delayed for a connecting flight and people reaching their final destination, they are also able to separate the high rollers from the fish.

Customers can tweet to SWA asking them to delay a flight in an effort to catch their connecting flight and SWA can do that. From their command center SWA can send out messages and call people on the floor asking them to delay a connecting flight so their customer can make it! SWA not only has eyes in the sky, they got social media covered too.

Are you thinking of building out a social care command centre but don’t have the resources to do so?

Not to worry as BrandBastion can be that for you.

We monitor and moderate Facebook, Youtube, Instagram and Wikipedia for any spam or defamatory comments. Should a customer reach out to you on Facebook asking for help, we can escalate this to you and let you know almost as soon as your customer is able to hit “send”.

Get in touch today and hear us out! We offer a free consultation to chart your needs and explain how we can fill the void you are looking to complete.

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