Etihad Airways is celebrating social media success after being named winner of the Best Emerging Airline on Social Media Award at the SimpliFlying Awards 2014, and for having reached one million Facebook fans globally.
The SimpliFlying Awards recognise the best social media campaigns and practices in the aviation industry. The winners were announced at a glittering ceremony during the Travel Distribution Summit North America in New York this week, attended by more than 400 travel and hospitality executives.
A rigorous process of public voting and an expert panel of judges selected the U.A.E. flag carrier as winner of the Best Emerging Airline on Social Media Award, in recognition of the airline's sophisticated strategy, engaging content, targeted promotions and campaigns, and focused community management over the past 12 months.
Etihad Airways undertook various initiatives on its social networking pages to engage fans and build a stronger bond with them, alongside generating revenue for the airline. The pages provide real-time news updates about the brand, sponsorships, route additions, products and services, special offers and brand-engaging games.
Peter Baumgartner, Etihad Airways' Chief Commercial Officer, said, "Social media channels have become a vital part of our broader digital and communications activity. This award further inspires us to be pioneers in the global travel industry in terms of recognising and harnessing the power of social media, and telling the Etihad Airways story in innovative ways." Shashank Nigam, SimpliFlying's CEO, said, "Etihad Airways has adopted a methodological approach to social media marketing, resulting in a dramatic increase in engagement over the last year, particularly around the launch of their new Boeing 787 Dreamliner and Airbus A380 products, which will be taking to the skies in December. The airline came from behind and has taken the competition by storm." Etihad Airways continues to broaden its social media offerings and plans to develop an official blog and launch new brand accounts in multiple languages. These new endeavours are all part of an enduring effort from Etihad Airways to improve the experience of fans of the airline, who can stay connected with the airline by visiting any of its social media channels.