Thought leadership

Dutch airline KLM has outperformed the rest of the travel industry in the very first Travel Social Media Benchmark from eDigitalResearch, topping the Facebook league table with over 4.5 million followers, 1.7million more than any other travel brand.

The Travel Social Media Benchmark from eDigitalResearch measures the performance of travel brands across the most popular social media platforms, including Facebook, Twitter and Google+. The results highlight how KLM’s comprehensive social media programme has engaged with more online users than any other travel brand and have a staggering 1.7million more Facebook likes than second place Air France. KLM are also the only travel brand to appear in the top five for their Twitter, Google+ and Pinterest presence, demonstrating how a well-defined social media strategy can help to engage with large online audiences.

The results also highlighted that, on average, the airline industry is engaging with more social media users than any other travel sector; although this is most likely helped by their naturally international customer base. British Airways have topped the Google+ league table with an appealing and stimulating campaign attracting almost 2.5million followers, while American Airlines have taken the top spot in the Twitter results.

Derek Eccleston, Commercial Director at eDigitalResearch, explains, “The great thing about Facebook, Twitter and other social media sites is that they transcend borders. They are a fantastic platform for brands with an international reach, or even those looking to expand their horizons a little, to engage with new audiences across the globe. However, if brands are serious about reaching out to large international audiences, as well as using platforms as a customer service tool, it is essential that their social media accounts are well maintained, including outside traditional office hours and at important weekend periods”.

However, the benchmark also found that, like many retailers, travel brands are failing to update their social media accounts on Saturdays and Sundays. On average, travel brands post less than half on a weekend than they do during a weekday. For the travel industry especially, the 24/7 nature of social media means that customers who are attempting to interact with brands on social media platforms are likely to expect an almost instant response, especially as more and more brands are opening up their social media accounts as a valid customer service channel.

Elsewhere in the benchmark, the hotel sector performed particularly well in the Pinterest league table with Four Seasons taking the top spot with 31,383 followers, followed by Mr and Mrs Smith and in second and third respectively.

To download the full Travel Social Media Benchmark results please complete the following short registration survey


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