How To Win Your Fans Back After Adversity

We always talk about the marketing challenges and hurdles to “getting people to do the stuff you need them to do.” Well, after their recent outbreaks of E.Coli, Salmonella and norovirus, fast casual dining sensation, Chipotle Mexican Grill has one heck of a task ahead as it tries to get fans back into the fold.

But once again, they operate ON BRAND to tackle the issues, with a BIG dose of honesty, openness, and not a small amount of charm as they announce that they will be closing down ALL of their 19,000 stores on February 8th for a National Staff Meeting to discuss food safety, and to spend a few hours to “thank employees, discuss changes and answer questions”. That’s going to be SOME meeting!

A new marketing campaign will be launching then, too. Supposedly featuring TV, but also direct mail and newspaper ads (how retro!). How it will do is anyone’s guess. But seems what customers want to hear is a clear and honest description of exactly what happened in their supply chain, what they have done to address it, and how they will ensure that it won’t happen again.

At the time of this writing, both Chipotle and the CDC are still uncertain where in their food supply the outbreak came from. But CEO Steve Ells says “We know that Chipotle is as safe as it’s ever been before.” Is that enough? Will they be able to get their story back on track?  I hope that they can. I like their food, and haven’t stopped in since last December.


SOURCES: CNN Money 1/14/16, 1/15/16

This entry was posted in Advertising, Branding, Controversy, Customer Service, Food Marketing, Health Marketing, Marketing Tactics, Social Responsibility and Philanthropy, Travel, Hospitality, Restaurants. Bookmark the permalink.

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