Recently off the phone to Cox Inall’s chief Tim Powell who v responsively called me back twice. We chatted about this mini blog PR disaster (which I’m sure he wasn’t personally involved with). Here’s a shorthanded precis of what we discussed:
PR Disasters: Did Cox Inall conceive and implement this (mini-blog) campaign and tactic for NAB?
TP: Yep – it was an AFL-related SMS phone banking project with a charity and trade-in your old mobile phone element; we thought Footy blog owners and readers might like to know about it.
PR Disasters: How do you respond to your critics?
TP: We made an assumption that in submitting the info to moderated blogs, the moderators could make the call on whether they wanted to run with the info; we admit this was probably a wrong assumption. We’ve learned more about respecting the sensitivities of bloggers and about the whole disclosure angle. We’d do this differently in the future.
PR Disasters: Has this incident impacted your credibility with NAB, your other clients and the broader comms community?
TP: Obviously we’d rather we weren’t in this position. As a consultancy you do things as well as you can and learn from your experiences. Not sure about the damage to our reputation.
Thx to Tim Powell for following this matter up, and for clarifying his company’s take on the incident which should now be pretty much closed off (with instructive lessons for us all).