(Note: This post was delayed by about 12 hours due to a glitch in the publishing platform. It was written on Wednesday, Sept. 2.)
Last night I returned home from my youngest son’s “Open House” night at his middle school and checked my Twitter feed. There were a conversation between several people whom I respect about customer loyalty and whether or not the United Airlines “Guitar” video had negatively impacted customer loyalty.
Since I’m limited by Twitters 140 characters, I will elaborate here and post this link as a reply.
@prem_k wondered if United had suffered a negative impact by losing some of its most loyal customers. I replied that they probably lost some people who had a choice of carriers (and were turned off by United’s attitude). He then responded that he didn’t know about the
So am I.
We are talking about two distinct segments of customers. There are those flyers who merely want the cheapest flights. That’s who @prem_k was referring to.
There are also those customers who have a choice of carriers and fly where fares are competitive enough not to be the decisive factor in their decision. Those were the ones I was referring to.
Back to the original question: Will the United video impact loyal customers? I doubt there will be a negligible impact among frequent flyers that are invested in a particular loyalty program. It’s the not so loyal customers who could, over time, become loyal customers that United will probably lose. Not all of them. Just some of them. But if you extrapolate that revenue out over a decade, I bet you’d find the amount of lost sales considerable.
Life would be a lot simpler for organizations if all customers/constituents were identical with identical needs. Unfortunately, they’re not.
The point of my reply was not that I disagreed that social media isn’t a game changer; it’s that her argument was weak. Just because a group of experts all showed the same video doesn’t make them right. See “groupthink,” and “herd mentality.”
My point was that she could have made a stronger argument, but I admit it’s difficult when you’re restricted to 140 characters.
Clear as mud? Let the discussions continue. I enjoy and learn from them.
Follow me on Twitter. I’m txglennross. But if you’re a spammer, I will report you to @spam. Don’t waste your time or mine.