I’ve written here on the Listening Post and here on my personal blog about Southwest’s entry into Web 2.0 with their Nuts about Southwest Blog. They took the initiative on the seating controversy issue by posting to their blog on the topic.
They’ve now taken another step in the direction of using their blog and Web 2.0 technologies to better listen to their customers and explain the rationale for their decisions on service changes. This time their CEO appears as a guest blogger on the Nuts blog.
I love this post …. it clearly demonstrates why Southwest is such a great company and why it continues to lead the otherwise hapless airline industry in profitability. Southwest understood the notion and value of listening posts and customer loyalty long before Web 2.0 existed. My assessment is that they simply see Web 2.0 as a new and potentially effective enabler for improving their ability to listen to and better serve their customers, and thus increase loyalty further (profits follow of course).
The fact that Southwest has embraced Web 2.0 all the way up to the CEO’s office provides some of the best evidence to-date that Web 2.0 represents the next best enabler for setting up efficient and effective listening posts and for driving customer loyalty. If one of the long-term leaders in overall profitability and customer loyalty is embracing these new technologies, why would you not do it too?