30,000 travelers have spoken, and Dubai International Airport is the Top Airport of 2010. The study, conducted by our client eDreams, compared feedback from customer reviews of airports to determine winners in categories like shopping, restaurant options, lounge areas, and Customs. Here’s a great video overview (link for our blog subscribers):

We talked with Mark Toner, SEO Manager for eDreams, to learn more about the company’s innovative use of user-generated content in this campaign.

What inspired eDreams to release this study?

Mark Toner, eDreams: “We have seen an amazing response from our customers over the past year and have received thousands of airport reviews and ratings. As a result we wanted to share this feedback and give our customers some real news. This is news that only we could provide and that recognized their willingness to give us their feedback.

Once we decided to move forward, we quickly realized that there was a lot of content that could be produced from this, and decided to develop a marketing initiative.”

How was the study conducted?

“We collect reviews and valuations from our customers every day as an ongoing project. This study simply involved extracting reports from the Bazaarvoice Workbench about airports during 2010. This gave us the basic content. We analyzed and published the findings in landing pages, themselves linked from press releases.”

What were the results of the study and campaign?

“The results of the study allowed us to segment the data and create rankings for several different categories related to the airports (best shopping, best lounges, best transportation, etc.). With these results, we not only created a landing page (in English, Spanish, French, German, Italian and Portuguese) to display the rankings, but our design team also produced an infographic and video.

Consequently, we had a fairly large amount of activity in the social channels including Facebook and Twitter. The Twitter activity has been interesting – we have seen tweets of this study in many different languages from various parts of the globe. The Emirates, in particular, had an elevated amount of twitter activity since Dubai Airport was the overall winner.”

Why are customer opinions important for the travel industry?

“They help customers find out about airlines and airports before they purchase. For example, customers often times tend to treat airlines as homogeneous, and therefore base their purchasing decision purely on price. We want to show that their choice of airline has consequences. For a few more euros they may save themselves known issues and discomfort, but they will only know this by reading about other customers experiences.

Customer feedback is becoming increasingly important because today’s travelers have many ways to voice their opinions, via various open and public forums. Companies cannot ignore this, and are faced with the challenge of addressing feedback, whether positive or negative, across a multitude of online channels. Most respond very quickly, as social media has accelerated word-of-mouth travel dramatically.”

  • http://blog.bazaarvoice.com Ian Greenleigh

    Robert, I’ll be sure to check out the Skytrax survey. Thanks for the heads up. 

  • http://www.pocketinfo.net Robert Latchford

    The Skytrax World Airport Survey™ has a much large sample size and none of these 3 airports made the top 10 in 2011. I personally would have placed Dubai around 3rd or 4th in the world behind Singapore’s Changi and Hong Kong International Airport. San Francisco is an excellent airport and I would put it ahead of Auckland apart from the security screening which is OTT compared to other parts of the world.