KLM is an airline that is admired by many within the tourism industry. Many marketers acknowledge the wealth of ideas, the airline has with regards to launching new projects, campaigns and ideas that resonate well with consumers’ needs and expectations towards tourism providers. For many in the tourism industry, KLM as an airline continues to set the bar quite high, especially through its innovative use of social media. Regularly, KLM surprises not only the industry but also social media users with innovative ideas of how a social media channel can be used by an airline (Tnooz 2013).
KLM LOCAL EYES
Recently, KLM launched a new initiative on Twitter by rolling out its @KLM_LocalEyes Twitter account. With its Local Eyes campaign and initiative, every week, another KLM employee takes turn to tweet tips and recommendations about a destination. Each week, another destination around the globe is covered. As employees are different, the local eyes account provides tips about topics such as food, local restaurants and other things that travellers can and should experience in a destination.
As tweets can be geo-tagged, KLM is also visualising the tweets on a map to encourage visual engagement. This also solves the issue that some consumers might not be on Twitter, so all information stemming from the individual local eyes can still be accessed through the web on KLM’s Local Eyes site.
TRAVEL AND TWITTER
This interesting move by KLM, is one of the first times that an airline is handing over its Twitter account to people other than the company’s social media team. Although in the case of KLM only employees can take over the account and provide information and tips as chosen Local Eyes for the week, others have gone a bit more adventurous. Visit Sweden is certainly an example for that, as each week, another Swede can tweet through the destination’s Twitter account. Swedes can apply to take over the Twitter account and although there are some rules in place with regards to communicating in English and not tweeting anything racist or offensive, Swedes still have a lot of freedom when tweeting. In the case of KLM, the airline has been much more cautious when letting non-KLM employees tweeting which ends in only using passionate employees as Local Eyes.
For KLM however, it is a step into the right direction and soon many other tourism organisations will probably copy this initiative and use it for own purposes.
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