Three Lessons We Can Learn From Amy’s Baking Company
Google “Amy’s Baking Company, Scottsdale, AZ.” This week, what will pop up first is not the company’s website, not the company’s Facebook page, or even their reviews on Google or Yelp, but news stories like “Amy’s Baking Company vs. The Entire Internet,” and “This Is The Most Epic Brand Meltdown On Facebook Ever.”
On a recent episode of FOX’s “Kitchen Nightmares,” owners Amy and Samy Bouzaglo scared away the very scary Gordon Ramsey, as he tried to save their business. Yes, for the first time in the four-season history of the show, Ramsey, a British chef with impeccably high standards, seemingly no fear, and a vocabulary comprised of mostly four-letter words chose to quit working with a restaurant because the owners were “incapable of listening.” During the episode, you see the owners steal tip money from waitresses, yell at customers, and purposely ruin orders of food to “hurt” their customers.
After the episode aired, Amy and Samy took to the social media airwaves (i.e. their Facebook page) to defend themselves and their business against the negative reviews that had appeared online. However, instead of doing a little damage control, the couple continued to berate their customers, Gordon Ramsey, online review sites, and “ALL YOU STUPID PEOPLE.”
After a few hours of issuing completely inappropriate, unprofessional and bizarre tirades online, the couple claimed that their Facebook site was hacked, because they “did not post these horrible things.”
Whether or not this is true (note: this can’t be true), there are three social media lessons we can learn from this “epic brand meltdown.” Here we go:
- Don’t instigate confrontations with your fans publically online. Even if someone is making completely false claims about you or your business online, it’s actually best to ignore them, or if possible, remove the spam from your Facebook wall. Reacting to “haters” online only opens your business up to further criticism from people with way too much time on your hands. If you feel you must respond (professionally, of course), try to do it by direct message to the user, after you’ve had time to think over what you’d like to say. Just please don’t ask your fans to “bring it on,” because of one spammy review.
- Please check spelling and grammar before posting anything online. Nothing discredits the best (or, in the case of the Bouzaglos, the worst) intentions than a misspelled word or typing in all caps for emphasis.
- Don’t insult or blame anyone else for your problems. Not your competition, not your customers, and not the Internet. Process the criticism, but don’t take it personally.
We’ll see what becomes of the Bouzaglos and Amy’s Baking Company, but until then, remember that when it comes to your business, social media spreads good news and bad news the exact same way: immediately and very publicly.