Social Media, Marco Rubio and Poland Spring Water

Marco Rubio's Poland Spring Water Tweet pic. Image Courtesy of Marco Rubio and Twitter. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL. 2013.
Marco Rubio’s Poland Spring Water Tweet pic. Image Courtesy of Marco Rubio and Twitter. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL. 2013.

Last night’s GOP rebuttal to President Barack Obama’s State of the Union Address given by Marco Rubio created quite the stir on social media. Twitter went ablaze with jokes on Rubio’s off-camera reach for a bottle of Poland Spring water. Since then more tweets and news stories covering the drinking of water has sparked a lot of online comments from political followers. However, more surprisingly has been the discussion on Poland Spring water’s Facebook page. Some are wondering why the Nestle brand has not responded to any of the online chatter.

“Come on people, you get the #1 FREE media w/Marco Rubio taking a swig of a Poland Spring water bottle and there’s crickets coming from your social marketing …” – Victoria K.

“How have you guys not posted about your superfan Marco Rubio?” – Raman S.

And John D. wrote, “NOW IS YOUR TIME TO SHINE, Poland Spring social media manager!”

But in the professional communications’ circles, many would agree, that no comment by Nestle is the best stance to the brief and probably much appreciated shine that the few seconds brought them.

Here’s why:

  • Jumping into a political arena showing support or disdain for Rubio’s use of their brand, could cause more hurt in sales than anything else.
  • The moment, although great product placement, is appearing as not staged. Any discussion surrounding being happy for their time in the spot light, may cause others to consider it was more or less agreed upon in advance rather than being at the right place at the right time.
  • One wrong turn with the online chatter could be misconscrewed as a part of the Poland Spring brand.
  • None of this is following their “Born Better” tag line for the brand, at least it couldn’t be associated positively without touching on the first point above.
  • It’s not as though Rubio began to choke on the water or mention any disgust for its taste. It’s not as though the water was a part of a crime investigation. (See Skittles and AriZona Iced Tea.)

Although Nestle can safely capitalize off of the promotion from “water bottle gate”, there is no need to push it further. Some moments are just that and should be left to the public to run with them.

What do you think? Should Nestle respond?

Please comment below with your thoughts. They may be used for future articles.

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Above Promotions is a full service publicity, marketing and promotions company, founded with the purpose to serve an array of clients that are looking to expand their presence in the marketplace. From a local to international market, Above Promotions Company can provide the exposure that goes above your expectations. Visit http://www.abovepromotions.com today.

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Ebony T. Grimsley is the Creative Director and Owner of Above Promotions Company. She is also the recent author of “Because You’re Small: Effective Marketing Strategies for Immediate Implementation.” To find out more information on the book, please visit http://www.abovepromotions.com or purchase online at Amazon, Booktango and other online bookstores.

Sesame Street and Elmo Live On?

Elmo and Kevin Clash. Photo Courtesy of Bryan Bedder and Getty Images. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL
Elmo and Kevin Clash. Photo Courtesy of Bryan Bedder and Getty Images. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL
Elmo and Kevin Clash. Photo Courtesy of Bryan Bedder and Getty Images. Above Promotions Company. Tampa, FL

To the surprise of many who support and adore the Elmo character, Kevin Clash, the long time voice of the famous puppet, and his off-screen life placed some uncertainty over its fate. As of today, a third man, has come forward indicating he too had an inappropriate relationship with Clash when he was a teen. This accuser has also indicated he has a book that will be released soon that will discuss this period of time spent with Clash.

All of this reminds me of when Paul Reubens, aka Pee-Wee Herman, was arrested and CBS dropped his children’s show, Pee-Wee’s Playhouse. Paul’s career never rebounded from his child pornography scandal. In fact, one could say Reubens’ transgressions made it possible for people to take Clash’s with little surprise. Guilty or not, Clash will more than likely not re-enter the children’s entertainment scene. This incident has casted too big of a cloud over him that will more than likely prevent his career from flourishing again. The public seems to forgive and forget drunk driving, abuse and adultery, but sexual acts against a minor is etched in stone.

Sesame Street who originally stood by Clash even after the quick settlement with the first accuser, has managed to distance themselves from the man who brought in a considerable amount of money to the brand. With the resignation of Clash, Sesame Street has continued to move forward with operations not discussing who will be the new long-term voice of Elmo in the show.

Sesame Street has become quite the popular show this year thanks to former Presidential candidate Governor Mitt Romney. His comment during the first debate to cut funding to PBS sent fans of the network in a flurry. In fact, Governor Romney probably refueled the passion for the beloved children’s show, in particularly Big Bird. Now the question arrives, how will Clash’s scandals affect the Sesame Street or Elmo brand?

Many believe Sesame Street, especially with its prompt movement to address and accept Kevin’s resignation, will remain unscaved. Let’s face it. The show has been around for decades and has maintained a wholesome image through the years. Sort of reminds you of what Walt Disney and his legacy did for his characters and theme parks. Although both have faced concerning chatter regarding employees, both are considered iconic across generations and will probably remain that way.

So if Sesame Street is left standing with hardly a blemish, what about Elmo?

Hasbro probably has just as much if not more to lose if Elmo doesn’t rise from the scandals. Hasbro is the sole toy maker for Sesame Street. The Tickle Me Elmo doll and other Elmo items alone has accounted for half of sales for the Sesame Street toys. On top of Elmo carrying such a large weight of sales, his interest has seen a decline over the past few years. However, this Christmas season Hasbro released the LOL Elmo toy. So will Elmo be hurt by the scandal?

According to Gerrick Johnson, a toy analyst, the LOL Elmo toy has been flying off the shelves since Black Friday. Looks like Elmo will live on!

One would never want to be entangled with any scandal, but Sesame Street seems to have shown the world what to do if you are attached to one.

  • Move quick to provide concise statements to the public.
  • Keep it moving.

It will be interesting to see how Sesame Street and PBS handles their renewed popularity.

What do you think? Will you still support Sesame Street? Elmo? Have you already forgotten about Kevin Clash?

Comment below. Your reply may be used for an upcoming article.

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Above Promotions is a full service publicity, marketing and promotions company, founded with the purpose to serve an array of clients that are looking to expand their presence in the marketplace. From a local to international market, Above Promotions Company can provide the exposure that goes above your expectations. Visit http://www.abovepromotions.com today.

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Ebony T. Grimsley is the Creative Director and Owner of Above Promotions Company. She is also the recent author of “Because You’re Small: Effective Marketing Strategies for Immediate Implementation.” To find out more information on the book, please visit http://www.abovepromotions.com or purchase online at Amazon, Booktango and other online bookstore

Obama’s Strategic Timing of Support for Gay Marriage

(It must first be said, we are no political analysts, nor do we publicly endorse any candidate running for public office, unless it’s the mother of Above Promotions Company founder (whose name we’ll give at a later date so you can write in on the ballot in November).   Now that’s out-of-the-way, let’s get down to our very brief post for today, President Barack Obama’s timing of his support of gay marriage.)

Obama's Strategic Timing of Support for Gay Marriage. Photo Courtesy of ABC and Politico.com.
Obama’s Strategic Timing of Support for Gay Marriage. Photo Courtesy of ABC and Politico.com.

 

Kudos to journalist Robin Roberts for making media history for getting the first U.S. President currently in office to openly admit his stance on gay marriage during an interview on ABC.  And although the topic is controversial to not only the citizens of the United States, but also his supporters.  In reflecting on various stories this week and the crisis communications methods used behind the major ones, such as President Obama’s support for gay marriage, we have to give some respect to his political team and the strategy behind the announcement.

Of course there is the obvious, it’s election year so a big announcement such as this could be expected.  However, it’s not just about what is being said, it’s about the timing of it.  Let’s take a look at how many experts say one should deliver emotional, controversial or “bad” news.

There is the “Spin Method“, the “Sandwich Method” and what we’d like to call in laments terms around the office, the “Move On Method”.

The Spin Method requires more looking for a positive bright side in unique ways.  For example, “I may have eaten the last Edy’s All Natural Fruit Bar, but I just saved you from getting one of your brain freezes.  You know how they can really bother you.” 

The Sandwich Method is very much taking a little bit of the bad and putting it directly in the middle of a good you started off with and a good you’ll end with.  i.e. “I love how blue looks on you.  It really compliments your youthful skin.  But do you think the blue shirt you have on today is too fitted for going to Mass today?  You know I do think the blue one you wore the other day made you look really fabulous.  In fact, you look fabulous most of the time no matter what color you wear.” 

The Move On Method is just simply that.  Let’s take a topic that will eventually come up anyways.  Quickly talk about it on my own terms.  And let’s just move on to other things which can be taken as positive.  i.e. “Yes, I know I missed the shot which could have helped to clinch the win today.  But we have more games to go and we’ll move closer to securing a seat in the playoffs.”

It really depends on when you started following or noticing President Obama’s campaign moves.  You can see a little bit of all of the methods above coming from his camp.  A group of keen strategists is one thing his team has been known for since 2007 and they are obviously still in this mode today.

So yes, we know it’s a political year and this topic would have come up eventually as campaigning became more visible.  Perhaps for some the thought is he may need to do damage control.  But in looking at the various methods listed above, it is obvious this announcement was no accident and there’s some strategic timing associated with it.   

Yes, it may help him to win more liberals than lose conservatives, but you have to admit, a person who can strategically address something controversial on their own terms may be “winning” in the larger scheme (for lack of a better word) of things.  Only election day will tell the effects of his moves. 

Which method do you like to use when delivering news that can be emotional to the receivers of it?  Have a good story to share in using or not using these methods?

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Above Promotions is a full service publicity, marketing and promotions company, founded with the purpose to serve an array of clients that are looking to expand their presence in the marketplace.  From a local to international market, Above Promotions Company can provide the exposure that goes above your expectations.  Visit www.abovepromotions.com today. 

Check back regularly for branding, crisis communications and other discussions on effective ways to promote your organization.