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Posts Tagged ‘Walmart’

Walmart’s Chinese Donkey Meat Got a Little Too Foxy

Gross

In what may be 2014′s biggest revelation to date, we now know that the fox says “I’m not a donkey.”

Three things we learned from today’s Wall Street Journal story:

  • Walmart operates in China’s Shandong province
  • “Five spice” donkey meat is popular among customers in said province
  • Walmart will now pay approximately $8 to each person who bought that delicious product after testing revealed the presence of DNA from other animals (including foxes) in the meat

What else is there to know?

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#PRWin: ‘Layaway Santa’ Rings Up $20K for Walmart Shoppers

secret-santa-walmartAttention Walmart Shoppers: Your favorite discount store hasn’t had a slew of great news lately. In fact, you could fill one of its 18-wheeler trucks full of the bad PR they’ve collected recently.

From a food drive for its destitute hourly employees to deciding those hourly workers need to work on Thanksgiving, a lovely hashtag #WalMartFights and a disabled wrestler being banned from Walmart for life, all Walmart stories seem to suck out loud this time of the year.

The store that can’t seem to win during the holidays needed a little Christmas magic from the jolly old fat man to make positive headlines.

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Walmart Drops a Leg (and the Law) on a Disabled Wrestler with a Lifetime Ban

KNXVJoeCantrellWalmart has a nice slogan, “Save money. Live better.” While “savings” and “living” are two universal goals for most people, Walmart has seemingly decided that one dude isn’t allowed to save any longer, anywhere.

Meet Joe Cantrell of San Tan Valley, Calif. 

He’s a former “professional” wrestler (although the AWA, NWA and WWE doesn’t show this guy on the roster at any time) who is now disabled for reasons not gathered in this report from CBS Las Vegas. However, being a wrestler is not why Walmart has scratched him for its Christmas card list.

Dude is an avid “ad matcher.” And for his diligence to be a miser, he has been banned by Walmart — worldwide, and for life. Why, after the jump…

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#WalMartFights = PR Nightmare

Today we give thanks for the fact that we didn’t spend Thanksgiving night in jail after stabbing a fellow shopper over a Walmart parking space.

What, you didn’t notice that lots of people are making fun of Walmart today?

The world’s biggest seller of cheap crap took some unusual steps to minimize the easily predictable wave of viral stampede videos this year. These steps ranged from beefing up security with off-duty cops to “using quota systems” for the hottest products and even issuing separate wristbands for sales events starting at 6 and 8, which allow shoppers to “return two hours after an event starts to pick up their purchases.”

But all the “SHOPSTRONG” bracelets in the world couldn’t prevent this knock-down-drag-out over a television:

US CEO Bill Simon made the morning show rounds today in what Forbes calls a “PR offensive.”

How did it go?

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About That Time Ashton Kutcher Punk’d Walmart

2001 called, and it wants its celebrities back.

Seriously, though: this story is three days old but it’s worth re-watching this guy take a break from his demanding job as “product engineer” to give Walmart even more bad press.

We just got dizzy from all that spinning. Nice try, but no.

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Ohio Walmart Holding A Food Drive For Its Own Employees Makes Us All Feel So Many Things

walmart food driveIn the midst of a nationwide discussion over whether we should raise the minimum wage, a Walmart in Canton, OH seems to be answering the question. The store is holding a Thanksgiving food drive to help the needy. The needy, in this case, are people who work for the store.

A photo of the collection bins (at right) has gone viral after being passed around by the group Our Walmart, which has been working with the United Food and Commercial Workers International Union to unionize Walmart employees.

A spokesperson for the store, Kory Lundberg, explained that if you’re thinking maybe the company needs to pay workers enough so they don’t struggle to put food on the table for Thanksgiving, you’ve got it all wrong. This is something that has been going on for years, she says.

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Sarah Palin’s Media Relations Strategy: Keep ‘Em in the Back Room at Walmart

shutterstock_49682818

Sarah Palin has made millions telling people how much she hates every media outlet that doesn’t pay her, and this week she revealed that her basic strategy for dealing with journalists at an event is “relocate them to a back room in Walmart and make sure they don’t talk to me or anyone here to see me.”

The former half-term governor of Alaska visited a box store in Wisconsin to sign copies of her new Anti-Anti-Christmas book and, according to her Facebook page, show the world “that there is power in unity as we battle against Scrooges who want Christ out of Christmas.”

The only thing that makes it remotely newsworthy is the way her “team” dealt with the local journalists who showed up to write about her (because love and hate both drive traffic): they guided the group to a back room, closed the door and directed a guard to watch them until the event was over.

Oh, and:

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Walmart Turns Internal Promotions Into Holiday Publicity Stunt

shutterstock_139266389Who else but Walmart (or is it still “Wal-Mart”, because we lost track) could turn a string of standard promotions into a PR campaign?

Don’t get us wrong—it’s pretty cool that the ‘mart is giving 25,000 of its employees a big thumbs up in the fourth quarter. And dispatching top execs to various stores during the holiday season in order to announce “on-the-spot surprise promotions” is a smart move. But the idea that a job inside the world’s biggest, cheapest box “offers economic security and opportunity” is more than a little ridiculous no matter how many new titles and raises the organization hands out.

CEO Bill Simon said “It’s as good a time as any to tell our story”, which means “defend ourselves against the widespread assumption that most of our employees don’t earn living wages”. The company already announced plans to move 70,000 employees from part-time to full-time status by the end of the year, but that won’t stop advocacy groups from encouraging them to unionize or disputing the company’s own numbers.

Here’s the press release, which emphasizes that Walmart “expects to promote more than 160,000 associates to jobs with higher pay and more responsibility this year.”

At the very least, the company is doing a better job of aggressively protecting its reputation. What do we think?

Walmart: Save Money. Live Better. Tweet Haters?

walmart_bingoWalmart. Say the name and see vitriol spew all over your new graphic tee, on-sale Dickies and imitation Crocs (all sold at the Bentonville empire). Why? Ask the question and you can find a plethora of answers, in many languages no less.

Understanding this gargantuan amount of rancor for the retail giant would help an aficionado of social media to understand the roller coaster of entertainment it would be as Walmart’s social media management team. Good times, right? Up there with owning a timeshare in Iran as a “good real estate investment.”

Typically, an organization of that stature has to take the tweeting enmity, spam containing the Ebola virus and even DMs with pictures from People of Walmart all with a grin, a turn of the head and move on wishing a job would open at Target. Not any more, you haters of anonymity.

It seems the home of low prices is taking its high standards out to pasture and rolling up its collective bargain-shopping sleeves to fight back on Twitter, as broken by Digiday.

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The Secret to Winning CSR: Become a Better Company

Wal Mart Hazardous Waste

We just read this month’s Harvard Business Review piece on corporate reputation by former Edelman vice chairman and Walmart corporate affairs VP Leslie Dach, and it’s  worth a glance if you haven’t seen it.

To summarize, Walmart struggled to improve its reputation with better messaging, but when Hurricane Katrina struck its team had something of an “aha” moment. “No internal debate was needed” because the team knew that mobilizing its resources to provide victims with food, emergency supplies and cash was simply “the right [thing] to do”. Afterward, the path forward became clearer—Walmart would seek out opportunities and set specific objectives in areas like sustainability and “women’s economic empowerment” in order to overcome bad press.

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