Thank You America! Bad Move Chrysler.

Chrysler received a $4 billion bailout from the U.S. Government. In my opinion, none of these bailouts were deserved, and it is the respective companies’ fault for having failed. But, I had no say in the matter. They got the bailout. We all know the story at this point. So, I won’t rant.

But, I saw this ad they put out a while back and had been meaning to share it with you all for a while now. They posted it on their blog, which welcomed a flood of thousands of hateful replies. The blog has since been deleted entirely. I don’t know if they actually bought any paid ad space and ran this (but if they did, the money spent on ad placement would be even more insulting).

But speculating aside, and ignoring the question of whether or not they deserved a bailout – do you think this “Thank You America” move was smart from a marketing or PR approach? If not, how do you think they should have handled it? Should they have acknowledged the bailout? Was there any good way to approach this?


Thanks for the Money!

Thanks for the Money!


3 Responses so far »

  1. 1

    Jronius said,

    Although they might have been sincere when posting this, it is a large corporation and never will be interpreted that way. My opinion is that if they wanted to say thank you, slapping a static graphic together on a portion of their site is a poor choice. It’s like thanking someone for donating a vital organ to you with a greeting card…

    • 2

      Mike McDowell said,

      Great point – especially in using a medium like a blog for delivery of the message. You have to be genuine. And that highly produced “ad” was a highly impersonal, insincere way of saying “thank you.”

  2. 3

    Will Hull said,

    This advertisement was wrong in many ways. But how do you say thanks for the herpes from a person you just slept with? It’s that difficult. They could have taken out an ad saying just what they were going to do with the money so that they were accountable to the public, because in many ways they are now. Perhaps by doing so, Americans would have understood what “retooling” means and “restructuring.” Perhaps they could have demonstrated a plan of liquidation of their planes and how they CEO would give up his bonus and dare I say his salary for a year to make it happen.

    All better ways than the route chosen.

    Also publicly annoucing their plan through an ad would play to the personalization principle that you are mentioning above in your comments.

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