It has been said that we often learn more from our failures than from our successes. The recent experience of MoviePass is a case in point. The negative publicity resulting from its plummeting stock price and hike in monthly subscription prices (while barring access to some blockbuster films) definitely has something to teach industry partners and PR firms alike.
While the program had some financial issues, we believe that a solid public relations team with the expertise and background to help maintain customer loyalty, could have been instrumental in maintaining its stability. Here are a few big takeaways we have gleaned from the recent events.
Public relations is an investment.
It takes time, focus, commitment, transparency and skill to build a solid reputation. That reputation can act as an insurance policy against bad press, declining revenues, or even an accident or lawsuit. If people feel favorably about your brand, they are more likely to give you the benefit of the doubt. While MoviePass initially had a positive customer response, they weren’t able to communicate efficiently and transparently throughout the numerous program changes to maintain their initial customer base.
Direct, concise consumer communication is key in this social media saturated market where people have a choice of brand loyalty.
Be at the top of your game.
Companies that succeed in changing their established products or services are able to offset risk by communicating with their already loyal fan base. They need to express the advantages and benefits of the impending changes through clear, transparent communication. Customers who already believe in a brand are far more likely to rate a company’s revised offerings positively, even if they mis-step along the way. Had MoviePass been able to pivot, reclaim its brand devotion and adhere to best business practices, they may have been able to avoid the downward market turn and some of the associated negative publicity.
Remember to keep the main thing, the main thing.
Rather than being an entertainment subscription service, MoviePass became known as an information gathering service. They tracked and amassed data and knowledge of where and when customers were headed, before and after using MoviePass. It was poor timing on their part coming off the heels of the revelations related to Cambridge Analytics. MoviePass also had customers routinely accept new user agreements that excluded their ability to participate in potential legal actions against the company. All of these ultimately became a distraction from their main thing: seeing movies at a reasonable price.
Our goal is to help you communicate a clear, transparent message to your targeted audience. We are experts in audio media and we “get” radio. We are here to help, whether you are attempting to avert a growing PR problem or you want to further build your brand’s already positive reputation. We specialize in enhancing credibility for our clients through Audio News Releases, Radio Media Tours and Public Service Announcements.
If you are involved in a PR project and would like to discuss our services, please contact us to see how we can grow your reach.