British Airways has launched a social media platform called Metrotwin.com linking the world's two most dynamic hubs; London and New York. British Airways is the first airline to launch a social media platform of this kind.
Metrotwin is an online community that provides expert recommendations of the best places in both cities and extends the idea of ‘town twinning' to the level of restaurants bars, shops, neighbourhoods and other places.
Chris Davies, British Airways Digital Marketing Manager, said: "British Airways is a company which connects people and social media is about connecting people. We fly more people between London and New York than anyone else. Creating a community website about the best of what's on offer in the two cities we know best is a credible and useful tool."
Metrotwin's online community helps people navigate the vast number of web pages about these two cities and find the best content quickly. The website will enable users to review, rate, save, create profiles, suggest ‘twins', follow other members recommendations and make their own maps and lists.
Metrotwin gets to know your preferences and provides Amazon-style personalised recommendations. In addition, the "Metrotwin Index" gives every place a score out of 100, which changes dynamically, based upon user behaviour. As the site grows new features will be considered based upon feedback from the Metrotwin online community. In the coming months this will extend to mobile phone applications.
The project is a collaboration between three agencies engaged by British Airways. BBH led the commercial proposition and strategic vision, Made By Many were brought in to create the design of the service & content partner network, and Agency.com as a partner focused on development and delivery.
Mel Exon, Global Business Director on British Airways at BBH, said "As great world cities go, the dynamism, cosmopolitan diversity and sheer size of London and New York uniquely qualify them as drivers of global culture across media, finance, fashion, the arts & entertainment. Metrotwin is a useful, real-time & "twinned" view of the best that both cities have to offer, all in one place."
Top techie facts:
1. Metrotwin.com is the first site of its kind to use the idea of 'social twinning'.
2. British Airways is the biggest global brand ever to use Ruby on Rails externally. Ruby on Rails (RoR) is a cutting-edge web development framework favoured by many start-ups and innovative media companies for being Open Source and extremely rapid to develop.
3. Metrotwin uses a social algorithm to provide a real-time attention index for New York and London, designed to help people discover the best of the Long Tail of both cities.
4. Metrotwin was developed using Agile methodologies, making it quick to build and easy to change. Agile reduced the development lifecycle time, resulting in a start to delivery time of the initial beta site with live users in just 12 weeks.
5. Metrotwin's content is generated by a network of local experts in each city comprised of bloggers, brands and niche online communities. This allows the site to aggregate the best authentic recommendations in both cities using collaborative filtering.
September 23, 2008 124/SA/08
Notes to editors:
- Be a part of Metrotwin.com by visiting http://www.metrotwin.com
- Examples of well-known online brands using RoR include; Dopplr.com, Hulu.com, Twitter.com and LinkedIn.com
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