Ryanair and British Gas use Twitter for Customer Feedback – The Best and Worst Of The Week’s Digital Marketing


When it comes to eliciting honest customer feedback, Twitter is almost unparalleled as a mechanism for customer engagement. However, this week’s best and worst marketing shows two examples which saw very different results.

Editor: You’ll be pleased to hear I agree with you this week. It won’t last….

First up is Ryanair with their #TellMOL campaign asking customers for feedback on their services. Now asking for blanket feedback from customers, especially for a company with a questionable reputation such as Ryanair, can be a dangerous strategy. However, Ryanair’s strategy for dealing with criticism in the past has shown it to be unruffled by negative comments and simply ignores them or comes back with a snarky response.

This is probably why the campaign actually managed to generate a pretty positive response. The inevitable criticisms were pretty much drowned out by the vast number of very reasonable requests from customers. And what really nailed the success was the fact that Ryanair actually delivered on the suggestions in record time, publishing a list of service improvements that responded to the common issues raised in the feedback. Ryanair is continuing its live Twitter chats to gather feedback on the suggested changes and to maximise on customer engagement.

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And how not to do it. While Twitter worked for Ryanair, British Gas’ attempt as using the medium was a colossal failure and somebody in their comms team should have been sacked for letting this go ahead. On the day that British Gas hiked their energy prices by 10%, they chose to acknowledge their customers concerns through an open Q&A on Twitter inviting customers to live tweet the company’s Customer Service Director.

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It doesn’t take a genius to work out what happened next. The hashtag was hijacked and the feed flooded with angry consumers hurling insults and abuse at the company. Here are a couple of my personal favourites.

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While they honoured the hour they had committed to answering questions (did they really think an hour would be enough?) they achieved very little in terms of giving any decent responses. Amongst the criticism of the price hikes were a lot of people slamming them for the approach they took to managing the fallout and you can’t move for blog posts evaluating the campaign. It was a bad idea is pretty much the running theme.


Thanks to Jon Matthews from CloudTrawl for sending in this week’s worst digital campaign. Keep them coming!




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