In light of the incident where 2 Domino’s Pizza employees posted YouTube videos showing some pretty disgusting practices when making pizza, the president of Domino’s Pizza posted a video on YouTube.
In making this move, Domino’s is tackling its online reputation management and giving the company an opportunity to regroup and deal with the backlash occuring throughout the online community.
Companies that ignore the power of social networks should take a lesson from the Domino’s incident. The video that showed an employee waving meat under his rear and putting cheese up his nose prior to putting it on a sandwich wet viral and spawned the outrage of many people worldwide.
Domino’s was quick to realize that the new social web presents an opportunity for people to seek and share information such as this. User generated content is driving the new social network and videos such as the Domino’s Pizza Video will spread quickly, conversations and blog posts on the incident will escalate before they dissipate.
However, Domino’s was quick to listen, respond and reassure the public that the incident was an isolated incident. Domino’s combined traditional and social media to distribute a clear message to the general public that this is being dealt with in a prompt and timely fashion. By utilizing the same medium, Domino’s has attempted to take control of its reputation management, steer perception away from the incident, provide time to assess the impact of the original video and create a campaign to instill trust in the Domino’s brand.
While the incident occurred at one independently owned Domino’s Pizza franchise in Conover, North Carolina, the impact on the Domino’s brand is far reaching. The social web allows for videos such as this to be seen by millions online and has resulted in international media coverage, impacting franchise owners and the Domino’s Pizza company as a whole worldwide.
Companies must realize social networks such as Twitter, YouTube and FaceBook have major potential to damage a brand. They have to be aware of what is being said online about their particular brand and take measures to protect their online reputation. Companies who fail to incorporate online reputation management as part of their marketing plan are neglecting a major component capable of damaging any brand as in the case of Domino’s Pizza. With a corporate history going back almost 50 years, Domino’s Pizza’s brand was damaged in mere minutes when the YouTube video hit the airways.
Domino’s Pizza’s official response to the incident can be viewed below.