Extra Credit Blog
Last week, General Mills recalled over 1 million boxes of Gluten-Free Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios, resulting in serious negative feedback from consumers posted through social media. In a PR Week article titled “What other brands can learn from Cheerios’ direct recall response,” General Mills’ PR crisis response tactics were praised. The situation was explained to to consumers through an immediate press release issued to the media, posted on their homepage of their company website, and posted on their blog. The blog post was considered the most clever and effective response to the crisis because Jim Murphy, SVP and President of General Mills wrote it personally stating, “”As president of General Mills’ cereal business, I am embarrassed and truly sorry to announce today that we are recalling boxes of Cheerios and Honey Nut Cheerios produced on several dates at our Lodi, California facility.”
This article relates to what we’ve been learning in class about establishing positive brand-consumer relationships and two-way communication. Especially in a time of crisis, a brand needs to apologize for it’s customers, and assure them that the problem is being fixed immediately. General Mills is a reputable company, with brand, such as Cheerios, that is among the top selling cereals. Murphy’s blog post comes across sincere to the consumers giving them a personal connection to the brand. I believe that Cheerios reacted quickly with proper PR tactics in this case in order to keep loyal fans and prevent further negativity in social media.