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The Strategy Room

Gaffes by Google, Rebranding for Success, and Shaping Social Media through Company Culture

By: Elaine Joseph

Lunch Break: Aug. 8

QUICK PR READS YOU CAN TACKLE BETWEEN BITES

Happy Tuesday!

In today’s edition of Lunch Break, we cover Google’s PR issue of the week, the timeliness and success of rebranding, and how company culture shapes social media.

Google’s in Hot Water

Looks like Google is the next big corporation to take the hot seat. Recently, Google has been contesting its gender inequality problem after the Department of Labor found “systemic compensation disparities against women” during a diversity audit. Last week, a ten-page document was leaked arguing that the underrepresentation of women in tech is not due to discrimination but is caused by “inherent psychological differences” between women and men.

This is not a good look for Google, especially in the midst of their current battle with DOL. The company’s newly hired Vice President for Diversity, Integrity, and Governance issued a response on behalf of the company.

America Runs on Dunkin’

Dunkin’ Donuts is considering dropping “donuts” from their name in an effort to reinforce their image as a beverage brand. They will be testing the new name at several locations throughout the country, starting in California. In addition to a new name, the coffee chain will test-run a new menu. Starbucks went through a similar transformation in 2011 by dropping “coffee” from its name and expanding to baked goods, sandwiches, and other beverages.

This change could be due to the company’s sales growth numbers, which have recently fallen behind other beverage chains. While Dunkin’ Donuts has been referring to themselves as Dunkin’ in ads for the past decade, they have yet to incorporate this message in their signage and branding. Modifying the brand name could work in their favor, if it’s not too late. The pace of the market is rapid, and if you move slowly, you may be left behind.

How can I help you today?

When it comes to social media strategy, the culture and values of the organization play a role in its success. In a recent interview, Southwest Airlines COO, Linda Rutherford, explained that the reason her team manages their social media strategy so successfully. Rutherford credits the friendly and engaged culture at Southwest Airlines. She also relies on their ability to look at social media as “a means of continuing a relationship with each person.”

Social media has become a crucial operation for customer-service related organizations. Being able to engage with the customer in real time with discounts or information allows the company to feed and nurture individual customer relationships.




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