Nobody is perfect. Every once in a while, we do mistakes. Misspelling words, run-on sentences, wordiness, subject-verb agreement, other grammatical errors and confusing ideas. Sometimes these mistakes happen because we just don’t pay enough attention to what we are doing. Mistakes do happen even in the professional world, as Krispy Kreme demonstrated.
In 2015 Krispy Kreme UK comes up with a campaign to help promote their stores. For an entire week, they hosted activities for kids who were out of school, each day they had a new activity at their stores. But there was a detail on their schedule that they did not pay as much attention as they should.
Would you like a KKK Doughnut?
Krispy Kreme Klub, or KKK for short, was the name chosen for their Wednesday’s activity. But when they posted their schedule on their Twitter account and Facebook page their followers pointed out that KKK Wednesday sounded more like Ku Klux Klan (that is worldwide known as KKK) Wednesday than Krispy Kreme Klub Wednesday.
Adding a little more humor to the situation, they had Coloring Tuesday and Facing Painting Thursday. When you put all three together you get a very interesting concept.
Of course, all of that spread like wild wire over social media, news outlets and other media channels around the world.
The Show Must Go On
After seeing all the chatter that was going around, Krispy Kreme took their post down. They not only removed their post by all other advertisement material that was spread across different stores in the UK.
Two different spokesmen gave formal apologies on behalf of Krispy Kreme in an interview with theguardian. Lafeea Watson, Krispy Kreme’s PR manager, apologized in an interview with The Huffington Post too.
Besides of all they that was being said about them on social media Krispy Kreme still had the Wednesday activity but without the name, they had chosen.
Big Mistake or Just a PR Stunt?
The PR team did well in how they handle the situation. By rapidly removing their schedule from social media and reaching out news outlets to formerly apologize they were able to spread the word out in a timely manner and without damaging their campaign too much.
But one thing still bothers me a little bit, how did they not see it? The process of creating the schedule, coming up with names, designing the post, printing it and posting it at different stores and social media websites involves more than a handful of people. Yes, KKK is a group from the United States, but even me, remember that I’m from Brazil, think about Ku Klux Klan when I see KKK. Someone had to have noticed it at some point, which makes we wonder if that was not a PR stunt (not the best one, but an effective one).
Because of this “mistake” made on social media, their campaign received worldwide attention and it was being talked about all over the place. Posts on social media, videos on YouTube, articles on Newspaper were talking about and given free advertisement for their campaign. Unfortunately, I could not find data that shows if the number of people attending their daily activates increase or decrease after this to proof this point, but it makes we wonder if this was really a mistake.