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Posts Tagged ‘guns’

Newtown Starbucks Closed to Prevent Gun Control ‘Debate’ Event

The best way to manage the damage from a PR crisis is to avoid it altogether, right?  In a blink-and-you’ll-miss-it story, Starbucks scored a pre-emptive crisis comms win last Friday by closing the branch located in Newtown, Connecticut—the same town where a gunman killed 26 people, most of them schoolchildren, last December.

Why? Because several gun rights advocacy groups declared August 9th “Starbucks Appreciation Day” and planned to celebrate the fact that the company does not prohibit weapons inside its stores issue by, yes, bringing their guns to the coffee shop for a publicity stunt.

That’s not all:

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NRA Chooses Worst Possible Time to Release ‘Target Practice’ App for Kids

Hunting, like public relations, is all about timing. So it’s utterly inconceivable that the NRA has decided that now, as the country is still bereaved, shocked and confused about a spate of unfathomable mass shootings from Colorado to Connecticut, is a good time to release its Target Practice app, which is tailored for gun enthusiasts ages four and up.

Yes, four and up.

The politics of the gun debate aside, we’re perplexed by this app release. The NRA has the resources to employ the best in the PR business, yet this decision is a good example of everything a brand shouldn’t do when navigating a deeply emotional moment for the public (and attempting to emerge with its reputation intact).

The release is poorly timed, insensitive and completely tone deaf to the ways millions of people in America and beyond feel about guns–especially guns and children. We’ve all become far too familiar with the violence, the wasteful loss of innocent life, and the image of individuals with assault rifles marching down the halls of an elementary school.

So what, possibly, could have led the NRA to make such an inexplicable decision? We can only guess that a discussion regarding the timing of this app release occurred in some conference room in some office building in some alternate reality. Perhaps the individuals in this meeting raised these very relevant PR questions:

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