In early 2015, we added WhatsApp as a Transavia care channel. This made Transavia the first airline to use WhatsApp messaging for customer care.
WhatsApp quickly became one of the most frequently used social channels. The Netherlands has more than 9 million users (54% of the Dutch population), ranging from young people to seniors. We wanted to make contacting Transavia as easy as possible.
We see WhatsApp as a nice addition to existing possibilities such as telephone services, e-mail, Facebook and Twitter. WhatsApp is consistent with our desire to offer our customers full digital service. Because of WhatsApp's accessibility, customers expect an even quicker reaction than they do on Twitter and Facebook.
Customers can use the messaging app to ask questions, such as inquiries about bookings, how to check in online or hand luggage rules. We aim to respond to questions within 30 minutes.
For the service, we use a corporate WhatsApp solution called 'SaySimple', developed by Dutch IT provider Informaxion (website in Dutch) and which allows for multiple conversations to be managed by multiple support staff.
The research into and implementation of WhatsApp as a care channel was done in a very lean way since there were only a few companies from which we could get information. The start-to-live timeframe was less than 6 weeks.
We joined forces with Coolblue (an online electronics giant which is leading when it comes to digital services and innovation), the city of Terneuzen (the first city to be accessible via WhatsApp) and Media Injection (a social media platform which manages all social media data and uses this data to boost marketing campaigns) and exchanged information and experiences about this new customer care channel. Within 6 weeks, we had created support within the organisation, achieved our goals and defined our target audience.
With the help of Dutch IT provider Informaxion, we developed a platform in which our webcare staff could have desktop conversations with customers.
We went live at 8:00am on 2 February 2015. At that time, seven conversations were on hold while the press release went out at 10:00am. We have now arrived in 2016 and can conclude that WhatsApp is a channel that has been embraced by our customers. Fifty percent of our inbound webcare volume goes through WhatsApp with an average of 3,000 conversations per month.
Furthermore, we have become an example for many other companies when it comes to the use of WhatsApp and we are sharing our experiences with success.
•Gratitude: 70% of all conversations end with a 'thank you Transavia' from the customer
•70% positive sentiment on social media
•Response time under 60 minutes
•50% of our inbound webcare volume is WhatsApp traffic
•Media exposure (€50,000 online and offline)
•Interviews via WhatsApp
•20% shift from telephone service to WebCare, which is 25% faster and less expensive
•Average NPS (WebCare) of 20, average NPS Transavia WhatsApp webcare of 28
•Average of 3,000 conversations per month