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paul stallard's pr blog

How to respond on social when another company bad mouths you

Written by Paul Stallard

 Awesome piece of social by Poundland this week in response to a throw away comment on Twitter Thames Link Rail (now removed) that shows why it is so important to monitor your brand online. A member of the Thames Link Twitter team described its failure to provide an adequate service as ‘Poundland’ cooking chocolate. Quick as a flash, Poundland responded on Twitter with a statement pointing out the difference in its customer service (opened a store despite flooding and helped customers get their shopping) and Thames Link Rail (linked to news reports of them secretly cancelling services without telling customers in the past week).

The response was timely, included humour and stopped the brand from being bad mouthed online by TLR and will make others think twice about doing something similar. It also used two hashtags to support the comment #Proudland and #TLFail which say so much in themselves. In fact, the response was so inspired at my last look 4k people had retweeted it, over 10k had liked and 500 plus comments had appeared lauding Poundland for owning Thames Link.

I loved it. Not only because they fought their corner and didn’t let another brand bad mouth them publicly but because for very little investment, Poundland generated so much love by using the three rules of storytelling (use bad news/drama, human interest and topicality) in a short well written statement on social. Don’t mess with a brand that takes social seriously and is good at it.