‘The Spirit Airlines Debacle Is a Learning Opportunity for Other Companies Struggling with Social Media’ Says John Souza, SMMU Founder; Training Firm Donates $1,000 to Meekins Family for Air Travel.
ATLANTA, Ga. – On the heels of a social media firestorm, Spirit Airlines has granted Jerry Meekins a refund and donated $5,000 to Wounded Warrior Project in his name. But is it enough to undo the damage caused by the highly publicized customer service nightmare resulting in a “Boycott Spirit Airlines” Facebook campaign with more than 30,000 Likes?
“Social media requires brands to act quickly and decisively or risk losing money and customers,” said John Souza, founder of Social Media Marketing University (SMMU). “Your brand can be severely tarnished in a matter of hours, and without timely action, it can be difficult to undo the damage.”
Social Media Marketing University has begun using the Spirit Airlines blunder as a case study for its student body comprised of more than 83,000 entrepreneurs, executives and marketing and social media professionals.
On May 23 at 3:00pm EST, Social Media Marketing University will host a free webinar, “Blunder-Proof Social Media: 7 Ways to Protect Your Brand Against Backlash.” The webinar will cover seven key lessons that companies should take away from the Spirit Airlines mishap.
According to Souza, when companies invest in a robust social media presence and are committed to engaging their customers online, they are able to:
• Better control online messages and news stories about their brand and policies
• Manage customer angst and prevent major backlash
• Leverage negative incidents to attract customers, rather than lose them
• Reinforce commitment to customer service
“Incidents like these are learning opportunities for other companies that are still struggling to adapt to the growth and speed of social media and the impact its having on brands’ reputations,” said Souza.
“Social media isn’t just a platform for consumers to vocalize their concerns. It’s a vital tool for businesses to use to control how they are perceived, build relationships with customers, increase awareness and listen proactively. “
Social Media Marketing University contacted Meekins last week and offered him $1,000 to be used for airfare for his family, a gesture Souza thought only fitting under the circumstances.
“It’s important for companies to know that even when they aren’t listening to their customers in social media, the rest of the world is,” said Souza.
To register “Blunder-Proof Social Media: 7 Ways to Protect Your Brand Against Backlash,” visit www.smmulive.com/prevent-brand-backlash. Space is limited.
About Social Media Marketing University
Social Media Marketing University (SMMU) is the world’s most trusted social media training program.
Courses are taught by some of the world’s foremost authorities on social media and online marketing best practices, and the social media class curriculum includes interactive sessions and instruction on social media strategy, platforms and tools.
The program currently boasts more than 83,000 business owners and business professionals have attended SMMU’s social media webinars. For more information, visit www.smmu.com.