A new year long study shows that when it comes to receiving negative comments on Facebook and Twitter nobody in the airline industry beats American Airlines. In fact, the study shows that just 12 percent of the social media comments made about American were positive–compared to 97 percent positive comments for Virgin Airlines.
Social media is the greatest mass communication tool ever created. This has emboldened and empowered consumers who now frequently take their complaints directly to their legions of Fans and Followers rather than just griping about to their co-workers. (Although they likely do that too.)
It is bad enough that American earned this dubious honor, but it is doubly bad when you consider they have taken little action to turn the tide in their favor. Social media is a great tool for people with a complaint against a business, but it is also a great tool for that same business to address the complaint, resolve it and show the world just how much they care. A professional social media manager will monitor your social media campaign and immediately respond whenever a negative comment is posted. This type of immediate feedback can make all the difference in the world when it comes to customer complaints.
What you should avoid doing, at all costs, is expect the criticism to go unnoticed, or fade away into the ether. It’s not going to happen that way.
American Airlines has a prime opportunity to show it cares about customer service by embarking on a massive social media marketing blitz, improving their interaction with customers and resolving problems in the public eye. This might not be enough to turn the tide of public dissatisfaction right away, but at least it’s a step in the right direction.
Amplicate, which tracks social media sentiment, revealed the results of its research over the past year earlier this month, revealing that only 12 percent of opinions of American Airlines made using Twitter and Facebook were positive.
Compared to Virgin America, which earned 97 percent positive opinions, American’s statistics are pretty damning.
Then again, travelers are full of negative comments about US airlines on social media.
In total, 57 percent of comments were negative, Amplicate said.
Other airlines which earned the ire of tweeters and Facebookers included United Airlines, US Airways and particularly Delta, which ignited a firestorm by charging returning US servicemen for extra baggage.
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