When it comes to cruise ships it seams as if bigger is better. Cruise ships keep getting larger and as the population on these floating cities continues to grow so do the services. On-board Internet is nothing new as many ships provide connections and even terminals at cafes shipboard and in room as well. The disadvantage is these connections are often very expensive. But what about the thousands of people who are already onboard with you?
Carnival is the first company to address this with a first of it’s kind on-board social network. From the various terminal points or from your very room on the new Carnival Dream you can connect to an exclusive online social network. There are typical features such as your own profile and the ability to invite friends to activities both on and off ship. I actually think this makes sense because of the enormous number of people on any given ship these days. As a marketing move it’s very smart as younger customers, very familiar with social networks, will appreciate the high tech touch as well as the easier ability to connect with others that share similar interests.
The one thing I see missing is the ability to take your connections with you when the cruise ends. Why not allow this network to continue to function with customers get home? There is no reason customers would not want to continue to communicate with their new friends, especially of they are nearby. There is also an increased chance they may want to take another Carnival cruise together, even allow them to plan the trip right on the network. It’s a community that Carnival is creating with this network and that’s one of the most powerful things a company can do. It’s very much in Carnival’s interest to keep the community going and even extend it to others who have taken Carnival cruises. Your profile could list all the Carnival cruses you have been on with your comments and reviews on each one. At first blush this feature might looks like a gimmick but it has the potential to be much more than that.