Airports across the world are getting busier. IATA predicts passenger numbers will double to 8.2 billion by 2037, while the European Commission believes 20 airports around the world will be running at - or close to - capacity in 2035, compared with just three in 2012.
With the number of people flying rapidly rising and many airports failing to expand their infrastructure at the same rate, airlines around the world will soon find it more difficult to effectively manage periods of disruption without the help of the latest technology.
What’s more, meteorological trends indicate the severity and frequency of major weather-related incidents is increasing and security threats are becoming more common; so not only will more acts of disruption take place, more people will be affected when they do.
The good news is that technology is changing the way airlines respond to disruption, allowing them to deliver unforgettable customer experiences even in the most difficult circumstances.
Those companies that embrace the latest solutions ahead of their competitors will be able to forge a reputation as industry leaders in customer service. And customer service means a great deal more these days than it used to.
Some 80% of people will share details of a bad experience with friends, family, online review sites or social media platforms. Not only does this make those customers less likely to show loyalty to a brand that has let them down, it encourages many more people to do the same.
Thanks to high-speed internet and the prevalence of social networking, modern technology is now adopted by vast audiences much quicker than ever before.
Failing to reach customers at the right time via their chosen channel can lead to a business being rejected by consumers.
On-demand now the norm. These are the days of social media and its instant impact, same-day deliveries from online retailers, streaming television and film on-demand, voice search, Alexa, and Uber’s revolutionary approach to booking vehicles. People expect - and demand - immediate, personalised information at the exact moment that allows them to enjoy the ultimate experience.
The fact that the average person is able to get a highly personalised experienced across all elements of their life at the moment that they demand gives us a pretty clear glimpse into the future of the aviation industry. Self-service and inordinate amounts of information are going to be absolutely key in ensuring your business meets both the current and future expectations of your customers.
We'll be following up on this article later this week in The future of disruption communications Part 2, in which we'll explore the key trends set to shape the next 10 years of passenger communications during disruption.