Is it a paint job or a structural issue?
by Frank Strong
Crisis can be good PR, at least according to a study of 3,000 randomly selected Google users — Should Your Brand Take a Stand – published by WrightIMC.
When asked, “When I make a purchase, I consider the social stance of the company that makes the product I am purchasing,” this is how responses added up:
- ~39 percent either agreed or strongly agreed.
- ~26 percent disagreed or strongly disagreed.
- ~35 percent apparently could care less.
In other words, 61% of respondents said companies with controversial points of view did not affect their purchasing decisions. Based on my experience, I suspect its actually far greater.
Pop quiz: identify a brand name company that went bankrupt after a social media crisis.
The study concludes:
Overall, our survey results show that the majority of consumers either didn’t want to answer the question or are apathetic about a company’s stance and chose to answer “Neither Agree nor Disagree” on both questions.
Reporter Matt Wilson, in a post for Ragan’s titled Why controversies might be good for brands—study, and citing high profile social media conflicts, such as Chick-fil-A and Starbucks, sums it up nicely:
Though PR people certainly remember those incidents, most in the public forget them soon after they happen, according to a report from marketing consulting firm WrightIMC. It found that, largely, brands that stick to their positions may face an initial dip in sales in the month or so after a controversy, but soon afterward, the increased attention the stance brought the brand is actually beneficial. Read More…