A disgruntled customer of British Airways has bought a promoted tweet to complain against the airline which allegedly failed to respond to his father's lost luggage, according to a media report. Instead of putting out a normal tweet, Hasan Syed, a businessman took on the big corporation by paying for a promoted tweet, BBC reported today. The tweet that reads, "Don't fly @BritishAirways. Their customer service is horrendous", was picked up by news site Mashable; read, retweeted and commented upon by thousands of Twitter users, six hours after the tweet went live. Syed said that he decided to highlight British Airway's customer services following a trip his parents made from Chicago to Paris at the weekend, during which his father lost his luggage, the report said. Promoted tweets are generally bought by advertisers who want to reach a wider audience.
Experts believe that using promoted tweets in such a manner could represent a new trend. Reacting to Syed's complaint, British Airways said, "We would like to apologise to the customer for the inconvenience caused. We have been in contact with the customer and the bag is due to be delivered today," British Airways told the BBC. According to Shashank Nigam, chief executive of aviation consultancy SimpliFlying, "These tools are easy to use and brand detractors have the same access to them as corporations. I'd guess that this cost less than a thousand dollars to buy and Mr Syed targeted it smartly." The paid-for tweet is given high prominence in the Twitter feed of the relevant company but otherwise acts as a normal message and can be retweeted by others.