Southwest Wins Online Loyalty via Blog

If you doubt the value of corporate blogs, check out Southwest Airlines. Southwest has introduced a significant upgrade to its award-winning corporate blog, Nuts About Southwest, and the stats are impressive. Through active participation and engagement with online consumers, the airline has amassed more than one million Facebook fans and one million Twitter followers. During the three years for which Southwest has numbers, Nuts About Southwest has captured almost three million visitors, with 1.5 million of those visits occurring in 2010, Southwest reported.

Nuts About Southwest began in April 2006 as one of the world's first company blogs.

“It was originally launched as a means of giving our Customers a look inside Southwest's Culture and operations by allowing users to interact and build personal relationships with our Employees. Today's enhancements build on that ideology by feeding all of our multimedia tools into one space to enhance our two-way dialogue with Customers,” Southwest said.

The update is intended to give Southwest customers more ways to connect with the airline. Southwest vice president of communication and strategic outreach Linda Rutherford said the blog's new features were imperative to the company's emerging media strategy.

Blog updates include:

• The Southwest Social Stream, a tool that displays the Southwest Blog Team's web interactions in real time.
• Updated profile system that allows users more ways to connect with one another and to show Southwest where they've been.
• A badge system that awards users based on how they interact on the blog.
• A more streamlined approach to sharing news, video, and Red Belly Radio podcasts.
• Downloads such as iPhone wallpaper, badges, and Southwest's Social Media Guidelines.
• Improved content rating and sharing system.



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