Strategies could fail - a case study

Athikur Rehman Ansari

Athikur Rehman Ansari

Jul 10, 2021

In #marketing, sometimes, strategies could backfire if they are not executed at the right time and at the place. When the whole world is already dealing with pandemic #covid19, a brand like #SonyLiv uses an out of the box way to promote their thriller show on their #ottplatform #Undekhi by calling people and creating panic. This had to backfire anyways and people started complaining even involving the police authorities of respective cities and head of states.

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Maharashtra Cyber Cell came into action and tweeted informing people not to panic and be aware that it is promotional activity by a brand. They have also instructed the brand to cease the promotional activity. Now the brand is apologising to people on public platform. Their ORM team will have a difficult night and a much difficult day coming to them.

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Learnings from this:

1. Such kind of strategies would never work. Besides the pandemic, even in a normal times this strategy could have fallen down and put the brand under threat.

2. In marketing, it is often said that negative PR also brings in fame, and more so in the entertainment industry (I don't want to quote examples). In this scenario, what if the call goes to a mentally disturbed person and he/she panics and falls into trouble. This strategy could put the brand into great danger.

3. The brand is bound to be bashed on #socialmedia. It might trend on #Twitter negatively

4. This kind of strategy could put the entire marketing industry under #cyberwatch by the government.

My suggestions to the brand:

  1. Shit happens, accept it. Don't fire the guy who proposed the idea, it is not his/her fault alone (On the brighter side you have a person who could think way differently).
  2. Instead of apologising individually, do a PR own the mistake and get it away.
  3. Prepare a rules and regulations booklet for marketing strategies for your brand and roll it out so that such things never happen in future.
  4. Remember, you are not the first brand doing it. In 2010, #Volkswagen launched #Vento in India and did the similar activity by advertising in TOI with a device that had certain sound. People thought it was a bomb and reported to police.
  5. The brand has not responded to @MahaCyber1 tweet, you should have responded to them by now.
  6. Be ready for #crisismanagement, this could blow up big on social media, and even on news.
  7. #SalesforceSocialStudio is a very good tool to use. Keep a watch on social media and track the influencers getting involved in this. Create an engagement plan for them.