Communication / Crisis Management / PR

Tasteless Tweet

I am sure we could all name a big social media scandal that has shocked the nation. With the height of the upcoming presidential election in November, Twitter don’ts have been popping up all over the place.

During the first presidential debate between Obama and Romney, Obama gave credit to his grandmother for helping raise him. Seconds later, KitchenAid’s official Twitter account sent this, “Obamas gma even knew it was going 2 b bad! ‘She died 3 days b4 he became president’.”

Not good.

So what did the company do?

KitchenAid deleted the tweet and posted apologies on Twitter and other social networking sites. Its Facebook page apology said, “Hello, everyone. My name is Cynthia Soledad, and I am the head of the KitchenAid brand. I would like to personally apologize to President Barack Obama, his family and everyone on Twitter for the offensive tweet sent earlier. It was carelessly sent in error by a member of our Twitter team who, needless to say, won’t be tweeting for us anymore. That said, I take full responsibility for my team. Thank you for hearing me out.”

Quick, clear and sincere. Apologized and took responsibility. KitchenAid reacted in the best possible way.

In the PR world you need to know that a crisis can occur at anytime, even from within the company, and you must act immediately to impede it. Remember, whatever gets tweeted, not only goes viral immediately but also instantly gets published everywhere. Let’s not forgot we live in a high-tech world where information gets plastered all over websites faster than the blink of an eye.

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