Ryanair unveils new digital marketing strategy and improvements to customer service

Low cost Irish carrier, Ryanair, has unveiled its new digital marketing strategy, with the launch of a new website.

The new strategy includes the deployment of social media as a marketing tool. In line with move, the Dublin-based airline has launched its new @Ryanair Twitter page, a mobile application that can also be downloaded for free from October 1.

Ryanair’s CEO, Michael O’Leary, said: ‘Our primary focus this winter will be to significantly invest in, and improve, the Ryanair.com website, our mobile platform and our interaction with passengers using social media.

‘We are pleased to remove Recaptcha from November for individual passengers, although the security feature will remain in place for high volume or multiple IP addresses in order to deter larger travel agents, screenscrapers and others who flood our website seeking fare quotes, and diminish our website’s accessibility for individual passengers.

This winter will also see a rolling programme of development to improve the Ryanair.com website, make it easier for passengers to navigate, quicker for them to locate our all-inclusive price quotes, identify availability of our lower fare promotions and book Ryanair’s great fares for themselves and their families.’

O’Leary added: ‘These improvements will be accompanied by a new digital marketing strategy which will see Ryanair switch a significant proportion of its marketing budget from old to new media, with a particular focus on mobile and social media platforms.’

The new digital and social media marketing focus comes as Ryanair has been rated the ‘worst’ of the UK’s top 100 brands for customer service by a Which? consumer survey. ‘Which’ magazine asked its readers to rate each company based on factors including the frontline staff’s knowledge, attitude and ability to deal with issues. Ryanair scored an overall rating of 54 percent, the lowest of all 100 firms, with the rude and unpleasant conduct of Ryanair staff featuring as a common complaint by customers.

While the airline dismissed the results of the survey last week, during the annual shareholder meeting on Friday, O’Leary explained that the airline needs to find ways to avoid unnecessarily ‘p*****g off’ its customers. In response to a shareholder comment, O’ Leary said that there was ‘clearly’ something that needed to be improved, and apologised if people perceived the airline as having a ‘macho culture.’

He said that the airline’s main focus over the coming months would be improving its website, its mobile platform and how it interacts with customers on social media.