Wednesday, January 4, 2012

You Give PR a Bad Name

From Bryan:
I'm sorry, but is it too much to ask Metro to have someone on its overpaid, oversized communications team take 15 minutes to write up a quick press release summarizing the dramatic changes to SmarTrip/SmartBenefits in 2012?

I mean seriously, these were pretty major changes and left a lot of people scratching their heads. Did anyone else see the lines at the Metro office in Metro Center?

And yes, I realize Metro was forced to make the changes, and I realize this has been in the works for some time, but the communication was terrible, nay inexcusable.

I heard several people at work talk about Metro "stealing" their money, and my employer was pretty good about letting us know what was coming. Apparently, not all were the same as Twitter was lit up with many slamming Metro.

Way to let your rep sink even lower, Metro. And for no reason. Talk about low hanging fruit and a missed opportunity.

I think at least a friendly reminder (press release) about changes to SmarTrip would have been merited-- as well as a tweet or two before the holidays to reinforce it.
Heck, even after the fact, Metro could have linked to/tweeted the Examiner article, which did a pretty good job of summarizing the changes.

I mean Metro goes apesh*t, over the top nutso advertising over track work with those stupid and probably super expensive banners at all the stations, but this was an even bigger change to the status quo and for many, many more people, but Metro was silent. I went back over their Twitter feed--nada. Same on the website. WTF?

Just what are we paying these people to do? Where the hell is "^BA" anyway? Isn't he getting paid some exorbitant amount of money to tweet? Write a press release dude.

A major change how things work, a super suspicious ridership who thinks they're being ripped off, and ZILCH from Metro.

I'm not a PR professional, and I didn't stay at a Holiday Inn Express last night, I know Metro failed big time with this. It's as if they don't value their riders one bit.

I can almost see the conversation in the Metro PR department now.

Someone: Should we advertise the big changes coming to SmarTrip to our riders again?
Someone else: Nah, F*ck 'em.

Isn't that pretty much the whole Metro attitude about everything?

The whole communications team should be embarrassed, but I know embarrassment is not an emotion many Metro employees are familiar with.
Other items:
Metro, union prepare to face off for contract negotiations (Examiner)
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