GM’s Hummer goes electric, Instagram beefs up video tools, and One Million Moms raise hell with Burger King

Also: Google personalizes travel recommendations, benefits of coworking spaces, Frito-Lay gives a moniker to “Cheeto dust,” and more.

Good morning, PR pros:

Google recently introduced features that tailor travel suggestions to your preferences and history, with advice on when to visit, weather forecasts and price guides for hotels in the area. Google will also highlight prices that seem high for a given timeframe.

The Washington Post reported:

The new tweaks are even better for avid Google users who already rely on Gmail or Google Maps, because the advice that the site provides improves as the system learns about your search history and preferences. Google now shows users information about upcoming trips (with a focus on things to do when you get there), potential trips (based on flights you’ve been searching), popular destinations in general and your past trips.

The features showcase the power of personalization, especially if you can pair tailored content with ease of use, to further save consumers time. By both anticipating and answering your audiences’ questions, you can attract a loyal following that appreciate your efforts through website visits and sales.

Here are today’s top stories:

GM’s Hummer goes electric

General Motors is bringing back the Hummer, with a twist: The former gas-guzzling vehicle is now powered by electricity. The Wall Street Journal reported that the Hummer is the “first of several large, battery-powered SUVs and pickup tricks that GM is expected to roll out over the next several years.” The automobile maker will promote its Hummer resurrection in a Super Bowl commercial featuring National Basketball League star LeBron James.

Why you should care: By targeting the biggest critics of its original Hummer—environmentalists—General Motors stands to gain a new consumer group as well as decrease naysayers. You too can embrace your organization’s “haters” with by listening to their concerns and evaluating their needs stacked against your organization’s offerings.


MEASURED THOUGHTS

Do employees like a coworking space, or would they prefer working from home or in a traditional office?

According to a study from Clutch, 77% of employees say they are satisfied with their coworking space.

Here are some the perks that help employees settle into their coworking situation:

Do you have a traditional office, a coworking space, or a virtual office? Share your thoughts about what you like or don’t like with our hashtag #MorningScoop.

Instagram pumps up ’Boomerang’ tools

The social media app recently rolled out several features to enhance its animated video tool, called Boomerang. Users can select where the animated loop starts and stops, along with using slow-motion playback and other effects to enhance the video and increase interest.

Why it matters: The features are similar to tools offered by TikTok and Snapchat, underlining social media platforms’ continuing struggle for users’ time and attention. They also offer communicators additional ways to spice up short-form content that can attract consumers despite short attention spans. Engadget reported that the features “should give you a much better reason to use Boomerang if you’re tired of the same canned animation in your posts and Stories.” Along with keeping your content short and sweet, change up your tack to maintain freshness online.


SOCIAL BUZZ

Frito-Lay has coined a term for the orange remnants coating your fingers after you eat Cheetos: cheetle.

To make the word stick in consumers’ brains as well as on their hands, Frito-Lay partnered with Dictionary.com, which defined the word as “the brand name for the powdery residue that gets on your fingertips while eating the savory cheese snack, Cheetos®.”

The word was created to promote a new product line that offers popcorn smothered in “cheetle.”

Unfortunately, “cheetle” wasn’t the only bit of jargon tossed around in Frito-Lay’s press release:

 

“We’ve seen the way Cheetos lovers don their red- and orange-dusted fingers like a badge of honor, and we’re always looking for ways to help them step up their snacking game,” said Brandi Ray, senior director of marketing, Frito-Lay North America. “The only way to truly take popcorn to the next level is to add the iconic Cheetle, the cheesy dust that will entice Cheetos fans to snack on this popcorn all year long.”

Conservative group calls out Burger King

The advocacy group One Million Moms has published a press release calling for Burger King to remove or edit its ad for the Impossible Burger, in which a man responds: “Damn, that’s good.”

The group’s press release reads, in part:

Burger King’s Impossible Whopper ad is irresponsible and tasteless. It is extremely destructive and damaging to impressionable children viewing the commercial. We all know children repeat what they hear.

This ad is airing during prime time, when families are likely watching. Burger King should be more responsible in its marketing decisions. Let the fast-food restaurant know that as a parent and a customer you are disgusted by its recent marketing choices.

The ad was debuted on social media in August 2019, but is currently aired on TV, prompting the petition which has more than 9,000 signatures. Burger King has not responded to the outcry.

Why it’s important: A crucial element of crisis management is knowing what criticism should get a response—and which you should ignore. The Hill reported that not only does the One Million Moms group have a “dubious membership count,” but Hallmark brought more backlash folding under the group’s pressure than it would have by ignoring it:

… [The group] recently made headlines by threatening the Hallmark Channel with a boycott if it did not remove a commercial featuring a lesbian wedding and kiss. After severe backlash, the Hallmark channel reinstated the commercial, which was an ad for Zola.com, a wedding planning website.

You don’t have to respond to every online critic or negative piece of press. Instead, evaluate what the detractor(s) represent and how they affect both your brand image and bottom line before deciding whether to respond or ignore it.

WHAT YOU SAID

 We asked how misinformation is affecting your organization, and more than half (55%) said it’s a bigger concern than in 2019, though nearly 37% of you said fake news is not a big priority.

SOUNDING BOARD

 

What’s your opinion of open-office spaces? Do you enjoy the ability for brainstorming and collaborations, or do you find the design more destracting than helpful?

Share your thoughts under our Twitter poll or in the comments. Don’t forget to use our hashtag #MorningScoop.

COMMENT

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