Sometimes organizations find themselves in PR crises that can suddenly spring up and surround them without warning, and sometimes, these organizations set themselves up for failure and ridicule.
Take Hyundai for example. They recently had to pull an ad from youtube that depicted a man attempting to commit suicide in his car by attaching a hose to the car’s exhaust port and feeding it into the inside of the car.
This ad was meant to showcase the Hyundai ix35 with 100% water emissions, a notable achievement in going green. Unfortunately, this tasteless ad went viral after a copywriter from London made a blog post about her response as a person whose father committed suicide in much the same way when she was a child.
Her blog post prompted an outcry from the public as the demanded accountability for the content of the commercial.
After Hyundai got word of the blog and the angry following that it had incited, they apologized, stating, “Hyundai Motor deeply and sincerely apologizes for the offensive viral film. The film runs counter to our values as a company and as members of the community. We are very sorry for any offense or distress the video caused.”
When all of this has been said and done, I truly wonder whether or not Hyundai actually achieved its goal of spreading awareness of the product, and if they knew from the beginning the impact this commercial would have on consumers.