Bold statement, of course. But with a string of datapoints to demonstrate, it is no wonder travel brands are urged to think of social media as more than a one-way marketing channel.
Some factoids to consider:
- There are more airlines on Twitter than carriers with frequent flyer schemes (191 versus 179).
- Nearly 90% of frequent flyers use Facebook regularly, with 65% having joined an airline’s fan page on the social network.
- 72% of frequent fliers would join a social loyalty scheme.
- Around 65% of frequent fliers want to earn social loyalty points by performing location check-ins or contributing to an airline’s Facebook page.
- Four out of five frequent fliers think they could receive loyalty points by recommending an airline to a friends or providing positive feedback.
Now while so-called “social loyalty” schemes are still in their relatively infancy, clearly there is a desire by travellers to engage via social media with either a favoured brand (leisure travellers) or accrue and manager point programmes in a different way.
And with the new version of FacebookÂ tipped to change how its 700+ million members not only interact with each other but travel brands and icons, perhaps the classic loyalty scheme will be completely overhauled in the long term to account for social media being an constant presence in the lives of many on the web.