Natural disasters are seemingly becoming more and more common. Just recently Hurricanes Harvey and Irma wreaked havoc in Texas and right here in our home state of Florida. The combined monetary damage of just these two hurricanes is estimated to be around $70 billion. Billion, with a "B."
You may find yourself wondering what you can do to help those affected by these storms, well numerous corporations were thinking just the same. We all know that nobody likes companies that use disasters to push their products or that take advantage of misfortune for personal gains; however, situations like these are perfect opportunities to give back to the community and create invaluable levels of good will and brand salience. Let's look at some examples of this during hurricane Irma, one of the most destructive hurricanes in history. We'll look at Comcast, Jet Blue, Wal-Mart, and Google.
Before Hurricane Irma made landfall Comcast announced that they would be opening all of their wireless hotpots to the public for free to aid with emergency communications and make sure that everyone had access to important, potentially lifesaving, storm information. Comcast gained some much needed good will from this seeing as how they were ranked dead last in a in a survey of 10,000 customers rating their experiences with top TV service providers just a year ago.
Airlines as a whole have been in hot water lately from United dragging people off of planes and having millions of views on the YouTube video United Breaks Guitars, to Delta's computer algorithm mistaking the mass evacuation of Florida for "high demand" and raising prices on flights out of the state to over $3,000 in some cases. After a social media storm calling out the airline, Delta announced that they would cap flights out of South Florida to $399. Jet Blue generally has had decent press, and shortly after Delta got called out for raising prices, Jet Blue announced that it would be capping the price of any flight leaving Florida to $99 so that anybody who wanted to evacuate could. This created good will and also portrayed Jet Blue as caring more about its customers than other airlines.
Wal-Mart is one of the most powerful corporations in the world, and they showed their might with their level of contribution to disaster relief. They sent over 1,700 truckloads of supplies to areas in need and have pledged around $30 million in hurricane relief. On top of that, whatever amount Wal-Mart shoppers donate to the Red Cross, Wal-Mart has pledged to double.
Google is another giant, powerful company. You may be thinking "How can a search engine give back to the local community?" Well you may or may not know that Google is also a phone service provider. Called "Project Fi" they provide cellular plans based on only charging you for what you use, crediting the customer if they stay under, and not penalizing them if they go over. The entirety of Project Fi is customer centric, and Google took that customer focus to another level by giving any customer who was within an area affected by Irma a $20 credit off of their next cell phone bill. Its little contributions like that that make the consumer feel a personal connection to the brand and increase brand salience immensely.
Natural disasters are horrible, but they are also a great opportunity to both give back to the community and create long lasting good will towards your company. At Integrated Advertising, Inc. we understand the intricate ins and outs of public and customer relations. We give you small agency attention with big agency power.
Integrated Advertising is a full-service agency based in Jacksonville, FL., known for its expertise in strategic planning and negotiating, its award-winning commercial production, and promotional and event management. At Integrated Advertising, we help each client strategize the right plan to place the right ads, in the right spot, at the right time, so you can have a profitable company. Visit http://www.intadvertising.com/ or call (904) 296-2585 for more information