“Companies that focus on earning love will thrive during hard times, and kick ass when good times return.” – Andy Sernovitz
These are the companies that aren’t concerned at all about earning anyone’s love. You’ve probably been ignored by them in the past and our guess is that they will continue to ignore you in ’09. So without further ado, here are the top 5 companies most likely to screw up in 2009:
I really like Apple. They make great things that have made my life 10X more convenient. Despite their great gadgets, they regretfully are not talking to their customers about their product designs. Granted Apple users are incredibly loyal, Apple still needs to be listening to what their fans really want. Even though I love getting the regular email updates from Apple, I have yet to find a way to give them my consumer opinions. As the genius of Steve Jobs continues to fall on hard times watch out for Apple to make something that sucks and to do something really stupid.
2. Proctor & Gamble
P&G has a ton of products and a whole lot of smaller companies underneath its umbrella. Logic would tell you they would also have tons of outlets for people to talk to them about their numerous products. Not so. P&G has the regular website with a “news” section, but we are yet to see them talking on twitter or allowing their customers to offer feedback. P&G was also on our list of companies who messed up in ’08 for building a website without talking to their customers. Shockingly, their website did not appeal to their audience. We’ll see if they learn from their mistakes this year.
3. Coca Cola
Coca Cola isn’t exactly known for being a friend of the environment and they are most definitely not known as being a friend to online conversation. Despite contaminating water sources all over third-world countries in order to produce their delicious beverage, there has been no formal recognition or apology from Coke. Although it is an important issue, we’re not here to talk about the environment. Our main concern is the lack of conversation between Coke and the rest of the world. And we’re guessing that conversation won’t be happening in 2009.
U-Haul is already on a role for not responding to customer complaints. Despite the Twitter conversations and social network groups created to attack U-Haul’s services, they have neglected to respond to their online opponents. There was a point when U-Haul tried to be more personal in their approach when the CEO offered his personal cell phone number on national TV, but that’s where their efforts stopped. I hear Penske has great service…
5. Barack Obama
Most people are still in the afterglow of the huge Obama campaign and election orgy. Everyone’s expectations of the new president-elect are higher than ever before. They don’t have a care in the world – Obama will take care of it. Obviously, there is no way he can live up to everyone’s expectations. He might be dead sexy tonight and can do know wrong but he isn’t going to look that good when we all wake up sober and realize he actually is a human. Thats when his problems will start, this summer when the economy is still declining and oil prices start to go up. When people realize we are still in Iraq and getting more involved in Afghanistan how is he going to keep Americans from treating him like George Bush? The twitterverse will slowly start talking about real things, as opposed to being his most loyal advocate. We’ll have to see how he deals with reality when it hits. We might be a little premature on this pradiction but we think sometime near the end of 09′ American’s will begin to take off their “Obama Beer Goggles”