American Airlines, BookIt.com and Hotels.com Continue to Lead Travel Fleet on Social Media

Engagement Labs recently released a six-month rankings analysis on U.S. airlines and online travel agents (OTAs) finding that brands are putting more focus on responding to followers.

Engagement Labs recently released a six-month rankings analysis on U.S. airlines and online travel agents (OTAs) finding that brands are putting more focus on responding to followers.

The findings are based on eValue findings, the company’s analytics tool.

Engagement Labs CEO Bryan Segal commented on the study:

The six month eValue rankings for OTAs and airlines show there has been progress made within the travel industry on social media, specifically with the increase in responsiveness efforts from many of the brands. Airlines and OTA’s have a tremendous opportunity to continue to leverage their social media channels to further build brand awareness and become top of mind to consumers when they are booking their next trip.

He added that based on the six-month analysis, despite the fact that responsiveness increased, engagement remained low.

Top Ten Airlines – Six Month Comparison on Facebook

RankingMarch 2015September 2015
1American AirlinesAmerican Airlines
2Island AirAlaska Airlines
3Delta Air LinesHawaiian Airlines
4Frontier AirlinesJetBlue Airways Corporation
5Hawaiian AirlinesDelta Air Lines
6Sun Country AirlinesSouthwest Airlines
7Southwest AirlinesFrontier Airlines
8Alaska AirlinesSun Country Airlines
9JetBlue Airways CorporationVirgin America
10Allegiant TravelIsland Air

Top Ten Airlines – Six Month Comparison on Twitter

RankingMarch 2015September 2015
1American AirlinesAmerican Airlines
2United AirlinesAlaska Airlines
3Alaska AirlinesUnited Airlines
4Sun Country AirlinesJetBlue Airways Corporation
5Allegiant TravelSun Country Airlines
6Delta Air LinesSouthwest Airlines
7JetBlue Airways CorporationVirgin America
8Southwest AirlinesHawaiian Airlines
9Frontier AirlinesDelta Air Lines
10Virgin AmericaFrontier Airlines

While airlines have made improvements to be more responsive, on average, they only scored 41 out of the possible 100, with JetBlue Airlines achieving the highest responsiveness subscore of 85.94 on Twitter, with an average response time of six minutes. There is still plenty of room for airlines to take their customer service a step further via social media, Segal said:

We found that the airlines have a huge opportunity to engage their followers by creating content that will encourage them to communicate with their brand.

When looking at engagement subscores for the airline industry, they are low on average, with the average subscore on Facebook at 49.47 and 37.95 on Twitter, out of a possible 100.

American Airlines had the highest engagement subscore on Twitter of 67.78, along with the highest number of replies per 1,000 fans. The brand may not have the most followers of the group, but they are leaders in creating and posting content that resonates with followers. For example, the airline leverages user-generated content and images, which encourages followers to engage with them.

When looking at Twitter, three airlines have remained at the top, with American Airlines holding the number one spot with an eValue score of 88.17. In the second and third spot Alaska Airlines, which moved up one spot since March, and United Airlines, which moved down a spot since March. Similar to trends identified on Facebook, all three of these brands improved their responsiveness subscores by more than 10 points.

Top Ten Online Travel Agents  – Six Month Comparison on Facebook

RankingMarch 2015September 2015
1BookIt.comBookIt.com
2Orbitz WorldwideAirbnb
3TravelocityHotwire
4CheapOairTravelzoo
5ExpediaExpedia
6CheapTicketsOrbitz
7OneTravelTravelocity
8Hotels.comBooking.com
9Fare BuzzCheapOair
10Priceline.comPriceline.com

Top Ten Online Travel Agents  – Six Month Comparison on Twitter

RankingMarch 2015September 2015
1Hotels.comHotels.com
2OneTravelBooking.com
3CheapOairAirbnb
4ExpediaExpedia
5AirbnbCheapOair
6TravelzooOneTravel
7Priceline.comOrbitz
8CheapAirPriceline.com
9TravelocityHotwire
10BookIt.comTripAdvisor

Online Travel Agents are also using their social media to stay top of mind and encourage future bookings with their consumers.

In the six-month follow-up, BookIt.com not only remained the top OTA on Facebook, but increased their eValue score from 56.92 to 81.34, which is almost 40 points higher than its closest competitor. The brand also encourages its fans to interact with its page by posing questions, such as asking about their travel style or the destination they want to travel to next, then thanking them for their responses.

On Twitter, Hotels.com remained the top ranked OTA with the highest engagement subscore and number of retweets per 1000 followers. Expedia jumped from the fourth to second spot due to a major increase in their Responsiveness subscore, while CheapOair remained in the third spot.

Image courtesy of Hotels.com on Facebook