The real silver lining in the Motrin clouds comes from the opportunity now for the Motrin brand to join the conversation, starting with listening. There are other successful turnarounds that exist out there for them to follow. The amazing thing here is that Motrin IS the big topic du jour and everyone is shining the spotlight on them. It’s great that they have responded by apologizing and by pulling the ad but last time I checked official Twitter account for the Motrin brand still did not exist. What’s worse, someone has already hijacked and is using it to keep the struggle alive.
Brands need to meet customers where they want to meet and take the lumps if they have to. They have an opportunity to connect directly with customers though conversation and to develop potential long-term relationships – someday perhaps seeing those critics becoming advocates. The thing is, I believe people want to get to know the people behind the logos. People are real. People make mistakes. People are forgiven. It’s a lot harder to dump on a brand when you know the person working there, who’s trying to do their best to in whatever circumstance.
The Twitter crowd is waiting for someone to step into these shoes and to truly listen and engage with them – one on one. The very act of doing this will go far beyond any public statement, pulled commercial, or alternative traditional campaign. The Motrin brand has a real opportunity to turn this around by truly joining the conversation and becoming the next case study about how to turn a mistake into a wonderful opportunity.