As a 24-hour business, social media allows us to engage with the community and communicate directly with our customers, partners and passengers. In 2016, we saw strong growth across Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and Weibo of over 41,000 people, totalling almost 124,000 followers—a 24 per cent increase over 2015.
Our Twitter account (@yvrairport) gained 11,000 followers, a 31 per cent increase from 2015, to reach over 46,000—making it the most followed airport in Canada and the second-most followed airport in North America. Our ratio of followers to passengers is the highest of any airport in North America, demonstrating our effective and innovative use of Twitter as a key communications tool. We posted 604 times and had 4,207 retweets for our highest reach ever at 17,007,811.
Our February 17 tweet announcing WestJet’s 767 reached more than 73,000 people.
Our Facebook page gained 21,632 likes in 2016—an increase of 33 per cent over 2015. We focussed content on a range of interesting topics, including operations highlights, events, competitions and the latest happenings at YVR.
On April 9, YVR delivered a special treat for our active plane-spotting community: the arrival of legendary heavy metal band Iron Maiden and their Ed Force One aircraft. This custom-designed Boeing 747 is actually piloted by Iron Maiden band leader Bruce Dickinson. Our Facebook post displaying the arrival had an organic reach of 570,364—making it the top post of the year.
Our Instagram account continued to grow, with 7,268 new followers, a 106 per cent increase from 2015! We’ve had great success with Instagram, thanks to our active community, and held the top spot for Canadian airports—and the thirteenth position globally.
In 2016, we continued to grow our presence on Weibo—building on our reputation as the first airport in North America with a Weibo account. We promoted YVR as the preferred connecting hub between Asia and the Americas and worked closely with our tourism and duty free partners. We grew by 1182 followers or 118 per cent in 2016.