In Part 1 of this post, we did a quick recap of how Greenpeace and hundreds of outraged environmentally-conscious web denizens turned to Nestle’s Facebook wall to air grievances on Friday March 19, and essentially turned the company’s Facebook embassy into a battleground. If you missed it, check out the post (and the comments) here.
Today, we’re going to look at ways that this Social Media management disaster (and PR black eye) could have been handled by Nestle, had their Social Media team (internal or outsourced) been prepared for that kind of crisis. We already covered some of the major points of how to avoid this yesterday (hiring professionals to manage your Social Media outlets, planning for crises, training in crisis management and real-time PR, etc.), so – for the purposes of today’s post – let’s assume that Part 1’s advice was taken to heart and that trained, experienced professionals are now in charge of all of the company’s Social Media properties, including Facebook.
What to do if your Facebook Page comes under attack by an activist organization and/or scores of angry commenters:
1. Be there. You can’t gain control of the situation if you aren’t there, monitoring and ready to take action. So monitor keywords. Monitor channels. Expect attacks and crises to come, and be ready to act. In case your boss forgot to tell you, if you are charged with managing a company’s Facebook presence, you’re N.O.R.A.D. for them on Facebook. Keep your eyes on that radar screen at all times, and have a well-thought-out yet flexible plan of action if you spot missiles heading your way.
Recap: Nestle’s team was painfully absent when its wall was attacked on march 19th, and the result was a bloody trouncing of the brand that lasted not only hours but days. Whomever was being paid to manage that page essentially sat on their hands while it was taken over by hundreds of facebook users with – in many cases – legitimate concerns that needed to be addressed. Not exactly a stellar display of skill, professional savvy, or… presence, for that matter. Someone should have been there to at least try to manage the complaints.
2. Carefully but quickly gain control of the situation. (See 3 to 6.) Why is this here? Because it is important to realize that “response” isn’t enough. in order to be effective, you have to be more than simply reactive. You have to regain control of the situation. You have to regain the initiative. If you don’t, you will find yourself in a defensive position for days, and nothing will get resolved.
3. Introduce yourself. Put a face, name and role to your official presence. Don’t just reply from behind a faceless corporate identity and avatar. Be a human being. Talk like a human being. Feel like a human being. Engage on a personal level with commenters. Look at what Scott Monty does for Ford, for example, and how he does it.
Recap: Nestle’s “presence” on facebook on March 19th was remarkably corporate. This didn’t help establish the kind of rapport needed to begin a real discussion. Even if Nestle’s engagement had been stronger, its faceless approach put them at a disadvantage from the start. Humanizing its presence would have been a great first step.
4. Make a point to welcome the comments. Invite them. Keep it up. See number 3, above. This is important. Popping up with a comment every three hours won’t cut it. Get in there, ask your boss to go on a Starbucks run, and brace yourself for a long day/night. Like it or not, this is where you earn your pay, so strap in and enjoy the ride. Think Marathon, not 5K.
Once you get into the game, be cordial, be kind, be professional, and assume your role as the custodian of facts. Not propaganda: facts. If someone claims something about your company or products that is inaccurate, politely respond to their comment with a link to factual information that will help them reconsider their position. That infant formula comment in the screenshot of Nestle’s wall (the one about no nutrients) should be addressed. Without getting defensive or getting drawn into an argument, the facts need to be stated.
Recap: Nestle’s first attempt at “engagement” seems to have focused on the improper use of its corporate logo in commenters’ avatars. Not exactly an inspired way to get things rolling in the right direction. After a few unfortunate exchanges, Nestle backed off and went relatively silent, allowing a free-for-all of anger and in some case, inaccurate information that is now searchable on the web. This was not the most effective strategy.
5. If you haven’t done it already, create an area for Discussions on the Facebook page. This will give discussion topics their own tab on the page, and a place for people to go to start and participate in discussions that isn’t necessarily the wall.
Recap: Nestle did not have a Discussions section on its Facebook page on March 19th… and still doesn’t. And still doesn’t. And still doesn’t. (Nestle: You still don’t have a discussions tab on your facebook page. FYI.)
Why is having a Discussions area important? Several reasons:
First, it helps move a lot of the traffic and activity off the wall, which isn’t a bad thing – for obvious reasons. (Not all of it, but a good amount of it.)
Second, it helps keep all of the conversations focused. Instead of a mess of anger and random grievances, you can create a discussion thread for each specific grievance. In the case of Nestle, these individual discussion topics could be: Saving Oranguntans. Preserving Borneo’s rain forests. The health impact of using palm oil in candy bars. Baby Formula. Etc. When the mess of noise can be turned into specific discussion threads, the company can better listen and better respond. Now you’ve created order out of chaos for both the company AND the angry commenters. It works for everyone.
This is one of the first tangible ways that you will regain control of the situation: Manage the influx of comments. Organize it. Redirect it. Refocus it. Give the discussions purpose and focus.
Notes on tone, self control, and gaining control of an unstable crowd:
A) DO NOT GET DEFENSIVE. Ever. Don’t get drawn into an argument, don’t argue. Listen. Acknowledge. Treat every commenter with respect. Be professional. A lot of angry commenters just want a fight. Don’t give them one. Offer them your ear, a platform, and hopefully a solution.
B) Don’t be a push-over either. Don’t let the angry numbers fool you: You’re the community manager. You can and must assert your authority when people get out of line. Do it calmly, do it politely, but let commenters know when they are out of line. Don’t worry too much about the improper use of logos or “rules,” the way Nestle did early in their ordeal. It’s a weak position to try and defend, it serves no purpose, and it may only add fuel to the fire with a mob looking for weakness. (So pick your battles carefully.) That said, threats against company employees, deliberate personal insults, etc. should be met with a courteous but firm response. Example:
C – “Your executives should be hanged for what they’ve done! Baby killers! And you’re a soul-less sellout!”
R – “I understand your anger. I really do. (I wouldn’t be here talking to you if I didn’t care, and if my bosses didn’t care. We WANT to have this dialog with you.) But please let’s keep things from turning into… that. It’s just not constructive. Let’s talk about what we can do to fix these problems: What’s the first thing we should focus on?”
What you have to understand is that an angry mob looks for two things: Strength, and weakness. Show strength and they will respect you. Show weakness and they WILL tear you apart. Any loss of control (fear, anger, not knowing how to manage a Facebook crisis, etc.) is weakness. A calm, collected, confident, patient, open to dialog, knowledgeable attitude is strength.
6. Recruit your detractors’ help in fixing the issues they are angry about. Don’t just give your angry commenters lip service. “Thanks for your comments. We will review your suggestions and share them with management” doesn’t cut it anymore. Instead, ask your audience for advice and suggestions. Right there and then. Don’t wait. They want to express themselves? Great! Redirect their energy: Shift them from anger to deliberate empowerment. They’re angry at your company? There are specific things they want you to stop doing? Perfect. Take the discussion a step further and ask them to give you better alternatives to what you’re doing now. No, really. Do it. Keep probing. Keep asking. Make them think about practical solutions together.
If Step 5 gave the conversation order, Step 6 gives the conversations purpose. Do this, and you’re already half way there.
Why is this important? Several reasons:
First, it refocuses the angry mob’s energy. The passion that drives their anger and outrage is still, at its core, passion. Use that. Remove anger from the equation and channel that passion to a more constructive end. Lead them from the path of anger to a path of passionate, constructive discussion. In a matter of hours, the traffic to your facebook page will no longer be an endless churn of insults and angry attacks, and that’s a pretty important objective to accomplish.
Second, refocusing the mob’s mood and energy further shifts control of the conversation to you, the community manager – and by default to the company/brand as well. How? One word: Initiative. The moment your questions begin to drive the discussion, you’ve gained the initiative. You’re finally in the driver’s seat. You can safely land that previously unmanned 747 anywhere you want. Lose the initiative and you lose control. You don’t want things to go back to a mob of angry comments and insults, do you?
Third, you aren’t arguing anymore. You aren’t fighting or protecting or defending. You’ve potentially turned your enemies into allies. Even if that good will is tentative, it sets the stage for what could come next, and there is tremendous value in that. Very good things can come of it if you follow that path. Plant that seed, prove that with trust and good will, good things can happen, and build on that proof of concept.
Fourth, in the case of Nestle, an army of environmental conservation experts is right there, screaming to be heard. Why not benefit from their combined expertise and their willingness to share? Maybe the mob of activists can provide you with ideas that will help you adopt cost-neutral, sustainable methods and processes that will solve some of your resource management challenges, make your company more environmentally-friendly and improve your position in regards to consumer sentiment. There could be a huge practical win in this kind of dialog.
Fifth, the way your Social Media team turned an explosive and completely chaotic situation around in a matter of hours will not go unnoticed. Instead of being another case study in failure, you could be one of the still rare case studies in “this is how it’s done” success.
7. Follow-through. What starts on facebook or twitter or wherever doesn’t stop when you get to the other side of the activity bell curve. Once the crisis is averted, you have to take advantage of that little bit of trust and collaboration you’ve helped your detractors (and your bosses) glimpse.
Step 1: Once the crisis is over, thank the commenters for their help and invite them to continue what they started. Continue to be a good host. Build the community as a community, not as a fortified brand embassy.
Step 2: Convince management to let you turn the feedback from your new virtual think tank into something a little more formal. Form a team to look into how to take those ideas and make them happen. That kind of review process will identify what ideas have merit, and what ideas don’t. It’s a valuable exercise in that alone.
Step 3: Consider creating a crowd-sourcing mechanism like BestBuy’s Idea-X and Starbucks’ My Starbucks Idea. In the case of Nestle, a specific category, tab, or even separate microsite focusing on sustainable and responsible environmental practices might not be a bad idea. Don’t just rely on Facebook discussions to take care of it. Give solid feedback the home it deserves.
Step 4: Invite your detractors’ chosen experts and think tanks to the table. Recruit their help to propose solutions. This is a more professional and official extension of the crowd-sourcing element of the follow-up, and one that obviously needs to happen at a much higher level than Social Media management. (So yes, this requires real buy-in from the C-suite.)
The idea here isn’t just to pacify your opponents and get good press out of the effort. It’s to leverage their expertise and resources to actually find solutions to the business challenges that were at the root of the attacks to begin with. In the case of Nestle, this would mean inviting Greenpeace and key environmental action think tanks to work with senior Nestle supply chain execs on finding realistic alternatives to current methods of production.
Is there a PR component to this? Of course. You can turn anything into a media circus if you want. (That’s what conferences, summits and ground-breaking ceremonies are for.) But sometimes, less is more: Focus on finding solutions, focus on genuinely doing the work, and let the PR department do its thing. If you do that, it’ll all pretty much work out.
Step 5: Build on the momentum and trust you’ve earned, and keep going.
Is all of this difficult? Does it require A LOT of hard work and tireless effort? Yes. It does. I’m not going to tell you any of it is easy. It’s incredibly difficult to do all of this, and the bigger the organization, the more corporate, the more vertical the hierarchy, the tougher it will be for everyone. There’s no magic pill, no cool new app, no bit of enterprise software that will transform your organization overnight for you. Success requires hard work. It requires dedication. It requires vision, leadership, courage and A LOT OF WORK. But it also isn’t brain surgery. From crisis management to community management to change management, it’s all pretty simple, really. You can map it all out on a cocktail napkin. The trick lies in a) deciding to make it happen, and b) making it happen.
The alternative is… well, going through what Nestle just went through. And going through it again and again and again, until something finally gives. Not exactly a golden plan.
Be there -> Monitor -> Introduce yourself -> Acknowledge -> Engage -> Take charge -> Redirect -> Manage -> Follow through.
Update (25 March, 2010 – 21:15GMT) : For a similar perspective expressed in white-board “war room” format, check out Jeremiah Owyang’s Social Warfare Analysis here. (image) Really nice exercise that, remarkably, touches on many of the points we discussed in parts 1 and 2 of this feature. Consider it a solid “second opinion.”
I like suggestion #5. 😉
Yeah, 5 and 6 are pretty handy.
AND, these communication techniques should be adopted by those who would otherwise just rail against the system. Thing how much more–and how much more quickly–positive change could happen!
Right. That was the subject of a few comments yesterday.
You can either make noise or try to actually bring about change. The first without the latter is just an ego trip.
Having an eye towards influencing a company to make a positive change requires more sophistication than throwing rocks at its building (figuratively or not). 😉
Terrific (and prolific) as always.
Watching the Nestle drama unfold last week was cringe inducing. I kept waiting for Nestle to step up and assert themselves, to take charge of their social media space, to engage and defuse the marauding hordes overwhelming their page.
So much of your detailed advice seemed readily apparent, increasing the frustration of any actual Nestle fan watching them receive a brutally public beat-down.
I also couldn’t understand why they never put a human face on their responses. No personal touches, no video of an actual caring and understanding employee acknowledging their detractors’ concerns and responding with details of their commitment to protect the orangutans’ habitat. Not a hint of “social” in their SM responses. And now a cautionary tale for every other SM participant.
1. I suspect that Nestle outsources their Facebook page management.
2. Whomever manages their page doesn’t know what they’re doing.
3. No planning.
4. no empowerment at the page management level.
5. Not a whole lot of brain power behind the management of their page. Nestle needs to staff better for this sort of thing.
Just to play devil’s advocate for Nestle’s social media team (assuming they are internal, though it sounds like they may not be), what if the real breakdown was related to #4? What if management at Nestle completely isn’t bought in and doesn’t empower their community managers to respond to crises? What if management is committed to not responding to any demands that the activists might have brought them and don’t want the page managers to solicit advice because they think it will create false expectations? What if the team was under a mandate from their higher-ups to just lock down and not respond?
I feel like this is often where social media work goes wrong. There are smart people managing the communities, but no matter how hard they work internally to get the organization to evolve, management doesn’t come along with them. Yes, there’s an art to getting buy-in, but if you don’t have the buy-in you need when a crisis hits, is there anything you can to to get more leeway to encourage a dialogue?
If you presume that this was the case at Nestle, is there anything you’d tell their social media team to do differently?
I’d let you play Devil’s Advocate, but Nestle’s SM team already invalidated that possibility. 😉
As an aside, getting buy-in from Mgmt. is part of the job. If you can’t navigate that little bit of battlefield, you’ve failed before even starting.
I’d like to specifically touch on point 6.
While I like the idea, you must really take a close look at the mindset of your detractors. Let’s face it, the love, peace and harmony approach typically won’t work for organizations that are ideologically driven.
All too often, the desired outcomes of many activist organizations are:
* Seeing that company going out-of-business
* Requesting a change in a how a company does business that is simply not feasible
If a brand is willing to explore a common solution, there must be flexibility on BOTH sides of the argument. Without that environment, I would stay far away from point 6.
I completely hear you, Jeremy. And like you, I’m a realist.
But look, sometimes, elements of organizations like Greenpeace lean towards the fringe because they feel that there is no other way to have their voices heard. Companies whose execs understand that resistance and conflict only fuel more attacks and animosity also understand that the fastest and cheapest way to silence detractors is to give them a seat at the table and meet them half way. (Or at least some of the way.)
Organizations like Greenpeace are made up of a mix of people. Some are revolutionaries looking for an excuse to fight a system. Any system. At the very far edge of that, you have your eco-terrorists. Fine. But some are purely results-driven. They don’t care about the fight. What they care about is the win. THOSE individuals are the ones who will welcome the invitation – assuming it comes.
So I think there’s hope. If you don’t give eco-terrorists a fight, they’ll go find one somewhere else. Cater to the more evolved members of the organization and see if you can come to a mutually beneficial outcome. 🙂
Well done, Olivier,
I feel the whole thing hinges on number 7 because without the ability (and authority) to follow-through it simply deflects the immediate storm only for it to cycle back around and start again.
The company (Nestlé or any) needs to be able to turn the interaction into action.
Or, if I’m the angry mob (or organist activist group), I see the discourse as a smoke screen put up by a smooth-talking PR bod drafted into the social arena to diffuse things and I am not fooled twice. My wrath will have grown.
That was supposed to be “organised activist group” not a collection of guerilla keyboardists 😀
I hear ya. Either way, spot on.
Do you have my phone tapped? I had 3 phone conversations along the same lines about how I or the team I was a part of would handle this situation.
I did not think of the discussion board during the conversation. Good idea to organize the conversation into problem identification, potential solutions, and collaborative actions.
I like the establishing the crowd sourcing aspects of this also. It would be interesting to bring the mob closer into the community dilemmas companies have to deal with their decisions shareholders, employees, benefits, protections, liabilities. By allowing the consumers in on a decision like this for a community outcome is in everyone’s best interest.
Thank you for the time and effort you put into studying this and providing actionable feedback! I still find it a little comical when the “I know better, than anyone how to run social media experts” get burned every-time.
The microphones are under your desk and just behind your steering column. The phone was too hard to get to. 😉
Not to give ideas out, wait til unions organize around these facebook fan pages, boy will that get interesting!
Thorough and thought-provoking. Thank you.
I do take some pause with #6 above. Sometimes, your detractor simply wants you out of business. If you’re a vegan group, you will always be the enemy of a chain of chicken restaurants. Not sure there’s much recruitment there that will lead to a compromise.
With regard to your tips to manage crises online, I see that some of your thoughts echo my own. My article in the current issue of The Public Relations Strategist begins to analyze some of the commonly held beliefs about 2.0 crisis management. The article and summary are available here:
I hope the link is helpful.
Your neighbor in Charlotte,
Well, yeah, some of the detractors are a little more fringe than others, and nothing Nestle does will change that. I guess the best a community manager would hope in that sense is a certain level of triage: Engage in dialogue with those who are willing, and let the most rabid of the detractors exclude themselves from the conversation, I suppose. If ou’re lucky, you may even see the community start to police itself to a certain extent.
I’ll check out the link. Thanks! 🙂
A wonderful follow-up to your first posting on this topic. Thank you very much for offering not only a thoughtful and engaging synopsis of the situation, but sensible, attainable, and realistic solutions for social communicators and their supervisors.
I’m not formally trained in crisis management, so it’s a bit frightening at first to look over this checklist and realize the full scope and scale of what needs to happen in order to manage these types of events. That said, the consequences of inaction and inattentiveness are far, far worse. You never hope to be involved in a crisis of any form or flavor, but this type of knowledge and wisdom are invaluable. Consider me a disciple. 🙂
And for Heaven’s sake, if Nestle did indeed contact with an outside firm to handle their Facebook presence, that firm needs to get their act together IMMEDIATELY. I don’t think I need to state the obvious that being snarky to a growing community is no way to maintain a business relationship in your area of “expertise”.
I think it’s safe to say that this firm – if it in fact exists – needs to remove this type of “service” from its offering immediately. Getting paid for an expertise that doesn’t exist, and advertising a service they obviously don’t know how to provide may not technically be fraudulent, but… something not too far from it.
Nestle needs some professionals to take this over, for sure.
Bingo! I’ve had the (mis)fortune of being involved in some stuff like this, and you nailed it, especially with the notion of giving the mob an assignment. Redirect them into a discussion, a vote, an initiative of some kind that’s productive for both sides.
Bravo, OB. This is a great field manual. You really need to write this up as an Ebook.
One note on monitoring: Facebook is partially to blame for this. Their refusal to allow API access to status updates/wall posts makes it impossible for even the most dedicated social media managers to monitor using a tool like Radian6 or Scoutlabs. Thus, it requires a lot of manual vigilance. I know you’ll say “then that’s what it takes” but in fairness to the corporate folks out there, it is a challenge that hopefully will be resolved eventually.
Yeah, manual vigilance is good way to put it. I tend to err on the side of old-school, so “manual” is always the default position I recommend to clients: Automate your alerts, but don’t rely on automation. Always have a failsafe. No matter how cool your radar system is, you still need eyes on the ground to see what’s really going on in real time: Run searches in Tweetdeck, for example. Check your FB wall at least once an hour if you can. Run quick searches on FB as well, for that matter. Community management is a lot about awareness and vigilance. (I’m a little paranoid that way, but better that than asleep at the wheel, I suppose.)
That said, yeah, I would love to see FB play a little nicer with monitoring tools. Even for a fee.
Unfortunately, untrained, unprepared staffers with a mandate to manage content rather than conversations won’t cut it anymore. I hope this situation helped illustrate that a bit.
Cheers, man. I like seeing you comment here. 🙂
“Automate your alerts, but don’t rely on automation”
I love this, Olivier, and I always love to read your posts, it’s like learning from the master 😀
Social media monitoring tools, like Jay said, can only get so much information from Facebook and depend on the people doing the analysis and how familiar they with the organization monitoring strategies and values.
However I won’t say there aren’t things in the works.. 😉
Also, I agree with Jay and Kris. Ebook it 😀
There is a tool that I recently demoed from Context Optional called the Social Marketing Suite that provides FB monitoring capabilities.
Very nice tool, however, very expensive.
Check it out, they’ll give you a free week to vet.
I shall speak as the outsider again and make the following points:
The ‘angry mob’ that besieged Nestle’s facebook was not a planned element of the Greenpeace campaign; they came along for the ride and ramped up the outrage by spreading their indignation via social media. Greenpeace was actually very surprised (admittedly, pleased also for the publicity) that it got so heated – but when you consider Nestle’s initial response, which was almost designed to inflame everyone’s feelings, then it’s hardly surprising.
However, the Greenpeace campaign (as Greenpeace campaigns mostly are; you don’t get to be an international and long-lived environmental group if you’re just a bunch of disorganised hippies) against Nestle has specific aims and targets – reasonable and achievable ones – which it would like Nestle to address. It’s also backed up with relevant research and data to prove the point; this particular campaign was launched to go alongside the publication of the report ‘Caught Red Handed’ into Nestle’s role in forest destruction.
Rest assured that as and when Nestle are prepared to speak to Greenpeace, a professional Greenpeace representative will meet them, not an angry mob (or at least, the angry mob might be there, but safely in the background..). And this person will know the issues, will know what they want, and will know what kind of things they want to see Nestle agree to. True, they won’t take too much company smoke-screening, but they will be prepared to enter into calm dialogue if that’s what Nestle are also prepared to do.
Greenpeace are also realists. Just radical ones. (Well, it makes sense to me!)
Oh, I totally hear you. 🙂
Not everyone looks at Greenpeace that way though. In the US especially, the organization’s membership and impact has been trivialized over the last couple of decades.
For outsiders (non-activists) and the neutral masses there is no delineation between official Greenpeace assets and random activists joining in the action.
This perception disconnect may not always be evident to everyone on Team Greenpeace. 😉
Olivier, I wanted to touch on something here that some may feel should be obvious or go unstated – but that I think is a critical component of social media communication that many companies aren’t fully cognizant of.
Everything you talk about here, which is sound advice and a great model (I see why Jay mentioned you could turn this into an ebook) comes from a place of psychological understanding. As a user experience and customer advocate type person, I have seen how few companies have employed people who approach things from this perspective. Training of personnel who are interacting with the public is essential. In the case of Twitter, this might mean training of all staff in the context of random interactions that may come up about their company, with more in-depth training for those manning company accounts. But in the case of Facebook, the handling of responses is probably done by a much smaller group of people who in this case lack several necessary components to do the job well, many of which are psychological in nature, such as: conflict resolution capabilities, empathy, perception awareness, customer service skills, compassion, intuition (reading between the lines and seeing what people are not saying) ability to see things from another’s viewpoint, the ability to pick up on subtle digs and inaccuracies (like a lawyer) and respond with clarity and logic.
These positions, of community manager or online customer service representatives or company spokesperson require not just the skills to do the job at hand, but an understanding of human nature, to be able to handle the various issues that would blindside totally someone less equipped to handle things.
More than a spin-doctor is required to even pull off the kinds of things you suggest here, and the problem I had with the Southwest Air/Kevin Smith as well as your own Twelpforce fiasco is that the persons communicating to the unhappy customer had no authority to really make anything happen, so it just seemed lame and ineffective. Combine lack of authority with exposed weaknesses and the inability/lack of human factors understanding to respond adequately and we will see this sort of “pr nightmare” again and again.
Yes, I really do see what you mean about the disconnect, which is partly why I’m taking part in this discussion – it’s interesting for me to see how the organisation is viewed from the outside. It would seem that there’s certainly an image problem that they need to work on.
I also have a very different perception of the organisation because I am drawing on experience of Greenpeace outside of America, and from what I gather, how Greenpeace operates varies quite a lot from country to country.
Anyway, that’s probably all from Team Greenpeace for now, but I will add to Olivier’s good advice on how best to manage activist outrage via social media and note that ‘not being evil’ in the first place is also an excellent strategy!
Brilliant, and allow me a little jingoistic comment:
Social Media enables asymmetric warfare
Social Media Communications is COIN (Counter Insurgency). You need to clear, hold and built, and you need professionals.
Brilliant, and allow me a little jingoistic comment:
Social Media enables asymmetric warfare
Social Media Communications is COIN (Counter Insurgency). You need to clear, hold and built, and you need professionals to do this: Go into the woods, be there, listen, stay there and start talking.
Pretty-much, yes. That’s exactly it. Nicely done. 🙂
Don´t know why it´s there twice. Sorry, did not mean to spam.
Just dropped by Nestle’s Facebook page…for what it’s worth, this is not something they “went” through — they’re still in it! If I were running a brand less established than Nestle, I’d be boxing up the desk toys and turning off the lights.
At this point, since it doesn’t appear that they’re talking, Nestle has to either a) waiting to see if the boycott has any noticeable impact on sales; b) if the Facebook takeover has any impact on sales or brand perception; and c) whether the whole thing will just peter out. Or all three.
Or they must simply believe that the great majority of their customers don’t interact with their brand via social media but in the convenience store.
While sales may not take an immediate dip, I have to think they’re going to pay a price, and soon, for essentially running an experiment with their reputation.
I agree. Waiting to see if/when sales start to dip and consumer sentiment for the brand dips isn’t a very smart strategy. (Actually, it’s a pretty sure sign of “we don’t know what to do, so let’s wait and see what happens.) My hunch: This is going to keep happening, and Nestle will take a hit in the long run.
Either way, letting people destroy your brand’s digital storefront like this day after day after day is… just bizarre. Where are you, Nestle?
Super article. Well-thought out and expressed. My favorite suggestion is Number Five.
Very well done part 1 and part 2. Motrin could have used your guidance last year as well…. might have saved them pulling down a multi-million dollar ad campaign.
Will be sure to point a few folks over here to read this as well.
Cool. Good to hear. You know, 99% of the time, all of this stuff basically boils down to a non-issue if you have a handful of people on staff who a) know how to handle this sort of thing when it happens, and b) create mechanisms for the company that allow it to react swiftly and intelligently to the threat. All in all, it isn’t rocket science, but it requires skill, experience and planning. 🙂
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