The Government Shutdown PR Winner

by Kerry Martin

A lot can be said for brands that take advantage of what’s going on in the world to stay relevant.  From Oreo’s massively viral “Dunking in the Dark” tweet during the Super Bowl’s blackout to Kenneth Cole’s slightly insensitive post about the Cairo protests having to do with the designer’s spring collection, social media is proving to be a way to connect products and organizations with current events.

In response to the government shutdown, took note of a few brands out there that have tried to make light of the matter, with some hits and misses from Denny’s, Red Bull and Cap’n Crunch.

One company that isn’t mentioned here is Hyundai Motor America, which is putting some weight behind its tweets.  The company announced that it will launch a payment deferral program for all federal employees furloughed during the shutdown.  While it will only be offered for a [hopefully] short time, this promotion still causes the desired effect of enhancing the brand during a crisis (much like its Hyundai Assurance program launched during the recession).

When faced with the situation of nearly a million people across the country not collecting paychecks, companies can either comment about it through social media in the hopes of getting noticed, or do something about it.

Hyundai proved to be the PR winner by doing the latter.

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