December 30, 2022

How Airlines react on Social Media during the COVID-19 crisis

Since its outbreak in mainland China at the beginning of this year, the COVID-19 virus has strongly impacted several industries. Especially the Air Travel industry got hit hard the past couple of months.

For a long time we have been monitoring the advertising and posting behavior of the airline industry in particular. We wanted to find out which trends we could discover behind the data. Now in a time of crisis, we want to tell you about some of the most important trends we’re seeing at this moment.

Topics covered in this blog

  1. Airlines are advertising less on Social media;
  2. Airlines are posting more organically;
  3. Significant increase in comments;
  4. Sentiment per airline;
  5. The importance of data in times of crisis

Significant decrease in ads

First of all, we see a significant decrease in active ads within the Air Travel industry since the beginning of March on a global scale. Some airlines started earlier than others, but by now most of the flight ads have been put on hold.

Active ads in Air Travel industry over time

Some airlines are still running some ads. Take Emirates, who recently started pushing its delivery services on Facebook and Instagram.

Delivery service advertisement of Emirates

More organic activity

On the other hand, airlines are now posting a lot more organically. Most of the airlines use the social channels as a servicing channel, on which they try to answer all questions related to topics such as repatriation.

The crisis also heavily impacted the amount of comments airlines are currently receiving, which is visualized below.

Airlines are receiving more comments than ever before

Sentiment per airline

This made us wonder; which airline(s) is receiving the most positive and negative comments in this time of crisis. To find an answer to this question, we did an extensive sentiment analysis on all the comments that airlines received in the past months.

It turns out that Air New Zealand is receiving the most positive responses from the traveler community, whereas passengers don’t seem to be happy with how Iberia anticipated on the crisis situation.

Sentiment score per airline.

In order to discover the patterns that drive positive/negative reactions, we made a compilation of Social Media posts. Below you see the top 4 posts that received the most positive comments from the market.

Posts that received lots of positive response.

You can preview the posts and comments via the following links:

  1. Air New Zealand: link
  2. Turkish Airlines: link
  3. Emirates: link
  4. Air New Zealand: link

Moving on, the compilation below gives you a glimpse of the bottom 4 posts that received the most negative response in the past months.

Posts that received lots of negative response.

You can preview the posts via the following links:

  1. Iberia: link 
  2. Transavia: link 
  3. Transavia: link 
  4. Thai airways: link

The importance of data

Bringing this blog to a conclusion. The COVID-19 virus is most likely going to change the way of flying permanently, which forces airlines to rethink their commercial strategies. We are getting only a glimpse of these changes so far, but this is most probably just the beginning of something that could change the entire industry.

Therefore, insights related to organization and consumer behavior will be fundamental in the upcoming months. These insights will help companies to react in the right way and prepare for when things start to get better again. Squaremoon offers solutions that can help you to react to this crisis and anticipate on the future. If the above sounds like something your business needs, just reach out for a quick demo!

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