gift1 300x250 Royal Dutch Airline gives passengers a surpriseRoyal Dutch Airline KLM has started an interesting campaign to connect with their customers called KLM Surprise at the Amsterdam Schiphol Airport.. Designed to track “how happiness spreads”, the campaign involves surprising travellers with unique gifts based on their social networking profiles.

How it works

When passengers check in at KLM’s Foursquare locations, the KLM Surprise team then uses social networks such as LinkedIn, Twitter, and Facebook to find out information about the passenger. Odds are, anyone who uses Foursquare will have a presence on other social networks, providing the team with information about the person and their trip.

The KLM Surprise team then uses this information to come up with a personalized gift to surprise the passenger with. The team follows up after surprising a passenger by monitoring the conversation generating on social networks by that person and their friends. They also take photos of the people they have surprised and post them to the KLM Facebook page.

What a surprise

The KLM team has surprised travellers with champage, notebooks, a watch, and traditional Dutch foods. One passenger, Willem van Hommel, was going to miss one of his soccer team’s most important matches of the year due to his trip to New York. KLM surprised him with a Lonely Planet guide to New York with all the best soccer bars in the city marked out for him. Another traveller, Tobias Hootsen, was surprised with a package to remind him of home during his long stay abroad.

How happiness spreads

KLM is keeping tabs on the conversations generated through social media due to this campaign, and plan to evaluate its effectiveness after November, but has already said it may be used again in the future.

KLM has previously proven its social media savvy with a popular Facebook application allowing users to create luggage tags using their Facebook photos. In 2006 the company had another success with an award winning viral video for its Fly for Fortune game.

KLM is going the extra mile with its social media efforts, using creativity to create exciting, crowd-pleasing projects. The KLM Surprise campaign is definitely a unique way to get your customers talking positively about your brand, and an innovative use for all that ‘useless’ information we post online.