Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Some People (and Companies) are Finally Getting it – You Have to Pay Attention to Social Media

By: Angela Walschinski, Account Executive, Leonard & Finco Public Relations, Inc.

It’s amazing to me when I hear someone say “social media is overrated” or “not everyone uses social media – I don’t.”  There’s a recent case in point that proves the power of social media.  Earlier this month Gap attempted to rebrand itself by replacing its iconic navy blue square and white font logo for a black font with a smaller blue square in the upper right hand corner. 
Gap quickly learned that social media reaction can not only be fast…it can be furious! 
Many consumers of the Gap brand voiced their opinions of the new logo on Gap’s Facebook and Twitter pages, and it wasn’t flattering!  Gap made its decision to revert back to its classic roots in a matter of days after observing complaints. 
Gap isn’t the first company to deal with an online social media backlash against a new brand and it won’t be the last.  What matters in this case is how quickly people created a buzz about the new look and how quickly the company responded.  Brand consumers want to have a say in something they care about and, these days, social media gives them that say.  Companies need to listen carefully when they distribute information and need to be prepared with a back-up plan should reaction be unfavorable.
What do you think about Gap’s rebranding effort and how they handled the situation?  Can you think of any other examples where companies listened to its consumers based on feedback received from social media?

1 comment:

Beth said...

GAP made a great move by listening to customer input on social media! While a changed logo may not have ultimately impacted sales that much, it's not worth the risk!