DON’T GET HACKED OFF WITH HACKERS – GREGGS SERVES UP THE PERFECT RECIPE FOR SUCCESSFUL CRISIS COMMUNICATION

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On the off chance you missed it, Greggs the Baker was hacked yesterday.

Specifically, sausage roll saboteurs decided to replace Greggs’ official logo on Google with something rather more offensive.

Google users who searched “Greggs” found the bakery chain’s company profile included a logo that read “Greggs. Providing s*** to scum for over 70 years.”

The image was sourced from uncyclopedia.wikia.com, a parody of Wikipedia, and its appearance was due to a glitch in the search engine’s algorithms.

One could be forgiven for thinking the temperature in Greggs’ PR and marketing department shot up to that of a freshly cooked cheese and bacon wrap. However, on the contrary, Greggs remained calm, serving up some impressive crisis communications that all PR and media managers should take note of.

Rather than express its concern (and probable outrage) at the situation, Greggs simply tweeted Google with an image of 12 delicious looking doughnuts along with the caption: ‘Fix it and they’re yours’.

greggs-pastries

Thus set the tone for Greggs’ Twitter talk for the next 24 hours (including a very entertaining exchange between the two brands).

As you can imagine, many a savvy social media user spotted the error and thought to bring it to Greggs’ attention – some of whom were certainly kinder in their delivery than others. Yet with each exchange Greggs responded with humour and good sport – no marketing-speak here, just witty, honest responses without a hint of frustration at the situation.

There are certainly negative connotations associated with this brand – many of which were pointed out by trolls throughout the day. A lesser marketing manager (or whoever was calling the communication shots) would’ve chosen to go on the defensive or, even worse, ignore the situation.

The brand didn’t go down this route though (thankfully). Instead, it spoke with a human tone of voice rather than a marketing machine, which is exactly what social media users want to see.

Greggs demonstrated a brilliant use of social media to not only engage an audience but to defuse a potential PR disaster.

As communications go, I found it delicious.

Don’t want to end up with pie on your face during a social media crisis? Give us a call!

 

@OwenLaBeck

@Peppertweets

 

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