According to recent reports, there are 1,68 billion active mobile social accounts (23% penetration worldwide and 46% penetration on mobile phone owners). Additionally, only a 25% of the installed mobile apps are used, mainly for socializing, communicating and gaming. Mobile social media appear to be the key communication channel for retailers, brands, and service providers. Shoppers and passengers will receive the right message on the right, their preferred and daily used, channel.
Furthermore, the instant messaging, offered by the social media, opens a direct, personalized, communication service. It provides all the appropriate means for timely and relevant updates to a particular passenger that is asking for flight information. Consider a frequent passenger that relies on updated travel info to keep on top of his travel plans. He needs to install and rely on multiple airlines or airports mobile apps, each one of different layout and uneven user experience. And in most cases, he needs to remember how to use all these mobile apps.
In contrary, a social media savvy passenger needs only one key channel to be updated and relieve hassle during the travel; his preferred one, such as FB Messenger or Twitter instant messaging. Such channels can be programed to offer interactive, dialog based service. The traveler just needs to ask, or query the service and retrieve flight status and other important info, receiving enhanced experience.
Athens International Airport became the latest airport to benefit from the use of the social media to keep passengers informed by launching the “ATH Messenger” service, developed and operated as SaaS by MPASS Ltd. Passengers can log in to Facebook Messenger on their mobile, tablet or laptop and opt in to receive live flight information simply by providing their flight number. London City and Dubai Airports also provide passengers with automated flight updates via twitter (@LCYflightinfo and @DXBupdates handle, respectively).
But this is not only a passenger experience service. It is an engagement and promotion opportunity for airport operators and airlines. The passenger can opt-in to receive promos, offers, discounts and latest news, or participate on surveys and evaluate the offered services. Personalized offers can be programmed and directed to frequent travellers via their proffered social channel, increasing impulse buying and incomes. This interactive relationship with travelers, using the direct awareness social channel, turns passengers’ data and preferences to valuable knowledge for airlines and airport operators.
MPASS Ltd cooperated with Athens International Airport, in order the latter to be the first one worldwide to launch new discounts, offers, and F&B promos via the “ATH Messenger” service. By using #offers, #shops or #eatdrink messages, the passengers opt in to receive personalized discounts and promos.