Sainsbury’s Internal PR Nightmare

A local British grocery story experienced a lack of internal communication from their corporate headquarters. Sainsbury’s, located in Britain posted a sign in their window that was supposed to be posted in the employee break room. The sign read in large bold letters, “Let’s encourage every customer to spend an additional 50p during each shopping trip between now and the year-end.” Customers were quick to respond on Twitter making the crisis viral.

One of the most common mistakes in managing a crisis depends on whether the right strategies were used for damage control. Depending on how the company handled the social media out lash determined whether the crisis would go away or become worse. Sainsbury’s should have also explained the cause for the miscommunication and apologized for the situation. A statement should have been issued regarding their respect for their customers and that the sign was only meant to boost employee morale. In the eyes of the public, this sign seems as though customers were not valued over the businesses profit. However the fact that the company was able to play off the crisis was strategic. They made a rather big situation seem as though it was a minor mistake.

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