The world of public relations is all about engaging consumers and raising awareness. The old wisdom goes, “All PR is good PR.” If people are talking about you, then public relations has done their job.
I think someone just proved that adage incorrect.
One Waffle House PR professional manning the company Twitter account just astonished and offended the world in less than 140 characters. It’s almost impressive really.
How did they manage such a feat? Well in honor of Anne Frank‘s birthday, some genius sent out this tweet.
How does one respond to such an inquiry? I have a feeling that Anne Frank would now be more of an IHOP person.
With one Tweet, this company and the PR person whose repping it, suddenly looks both insensitive and downright idiotic. Really not a great company image. And sure people are talking about Waffle House in some frame of reference outside of stand-up comedy. But I don’t think this is better.
There is one truth that this little snafu brings to light. With the ever-growing internet, your job can actually be ruined in the time it takes to compose a sentence. Your career can be forever changed by a statement the length of a high school yearbook quote. That’s a pretty powerful message, especially for those who work an industry that’s focused on reputation.