Crossfit and United Airlines Crushed By Online Controversy

Issue #112

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Shaun Dakin:   7/14/16 at the US Capitol where gun violence prevention advocates and Black Lives Matter advocates came together.   This is Violet.   


I attended a beautiful event with Rep. John Lewis this past Thursday evening at the US Capitol calling for common sense gun laws.    Halfway through the event, a crowd of Black Lives Matter protesters joined us on the West Lawn in an amazing show of unity and love.    The photo of this little girl, about 1, is the memory that I’ll remember the most.   Violet was so pure and so beautiful.   She made the entire evening spectacular.   

(PS:  This is another example of being THERE in person.   Witnessing history happening in real time, in person, instead of via technology.   There is nothing like it.  Here is a link to the photos and videos I took if you are interested.)

Two major brands are in the Crossfire of Politics and Social Media: United Airlines and Crossfit

In yet another example of how fast social media and the crowd can move two brands are in the hot seat this week for two very different reasons.

You can see the details in the articles below but here is the TL;DR summary.

United:   A pilot who is also a WV GOP lawmaker tweeted out that Hillary Clinton should be hung.    Now United is dealing with 1000’s of tweets and Facebook posts from angry customers demanding that he be fired.   

Crossfit:   In an act of tone deafness, the Crossfit Games announced that the winner of the games would win a Glock gun.   The major sponsor of the event, Reebok, sent out a press release saying they were not happy.

Takeaways and questions you should ask your staff:

  1. How good is your “rapid response” or “crisis communications” team and plan?    
  2. What are you using to monitor your brand on social media?   How often is this done?   Who is in charge of monitoring?  What keywords are you monitoring?
  3. How flexible are you in your response?

Bottom line:   Organizations no longer control the narrative.    Understand that and you will have come a long, long way.

Do you have stories to tell?  Let me know!

Thank you,

Shaun Dakin – Dakin Associates

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