For those who haven’t paid heed to recent news around the presidential debate nor food-related appliances, an errant tweet from KitchenAid during Wednesday night’s political matchup had this to say in reference to the President’s late grandmother:
“Obamas gma even knew it was going 2 b bad! She died 3 days b4 he became president.”
The post was removed with all swiftness—but not before many of KitchenAid’s 24,000 Twitter followers saw and retweeted it. KitchenAid’s public relations team quickly posted multiple apologies on Twitter and reached out to key news media to explain the snafu: It turns out someone on the company’s social media team meant to post the sentiment on his or her personal Twitter account. (Hate to be that person today….)
In my view, KitchenAid took the right steps in the right way—responding swiftly with the facts, accepting responsibility and apologizing with sincerity and repetition. This will serve as a great case study on crisis communication and the utility—and perils—of social media.
I only add one suggestion for those who use social media in any form, be it personal or professional. It’s my rule of thumb whenever tweeting, posting or pinning:
Never post anything you wouldn’t want to see alongside your name and picture on a billboard on the interstate.