Monday, April 20, 2009

Dominos Pizza discover the Power of Social Networking

I was reading an article on the Daily Mail about the Domino's employees who shot videos of one of them doing all sort of disgusting stuff with pizza ingredients ( Just after reading the article I decided I should do a standard Google search and was amazed to see that most of the top ten results related to articles reporting the story. The actual homepage of Domino's now stood surrounded by such articles.

Following this I decided to search for the video myself and noted that all videos that were reporting the incident had high viewership rates, with the official video reporting more than a million views. One of the employees involved has also been reported to have claimed the rights from the video, forcing YouTube to put down the link. The tremendous success of this video (unfortunately for Domino's) has caught Domino's by surprise forcing them to take immediate action to try to control the damage inflicted to the brand. Apart from the normal procedure of firing those involved the company sought to replicate as fast as possible...and what better way then using the same channel that helped to create all this hype.

Domino's posted it's own YouTube video (see below) featuring it's US president Patrick Doyle clearly irritated by the action of the two employees (or ex-employees) and the effect that their action could have left on the trust of Domino's customers and the possible repercussions on the brand and it's franchisor. However till today the video although registering over 500,000 views is still behind the 1 million mark that the original video hit. The company has now embarked on the journey of Social Networking and has also created a Twitter account to keep in touch with the general public...

However why should successful companies use a reactive approach (only react after a PR blunder) to adopt new forms of marketing which have already been used successfully by other brands? Could a proactive approach have made it easier of Domino's (in this case) to react more swiftly to this unexpected event and limit the impact of the brand? As Churchill Winston said, All men make mistakes, but only wise men learn from their mistakes...hopefully Domino's Pizza will now learn to be more proactive and other companies would be better off learning from the mistakes of others.

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