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Sunday, August 22, 2010

Glad I Don't Do PR for United Airlines...

Musician would rather drive than fly United
True story. A musician named Dave Carroll [sitting in the driver seat of photo insert] took a United Airlines flight from Halifax, Nova Scotia to Nebraska with his $3,500 Taylor guitar checked into cargo. Upon arrival, the guitar case was ripped open and the neck of the guitar was snapped.

Apparently, he spoke to three separate flight attendants that day who couldn't care less and the customer service claims department at the airport provided little service. He tried to get United to replace the guitar or at least cover his repair costs for 18 MONTHS, with no luck.

What did he do? He wrote a song, posted it on YouTube and more than 9 million views later created a media firestorm and public relations nightmare for the airline - that could have been easily avoided.  Click here to check out the YouTube video.

Here's a news clip from the CBS Early Show that was a direct result of that initial video. Who knows how much business United has lost and the ill will they gained from mismanaging this simple issue.

Epilogue: the Taylor Guitar Company posted a follow-up video stating that they would make another custom guitar for Dave for free - now THAT'S great customer service and great public relations.

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