Changing Direction Against the Wind

It is often difficult for a company to change the direction customers conversations that are taking place regarding the product they sell, Whirlpool is no exception. In 2014 Whirlpool set out to change the conversation by trying to remind people of the value of Whirlpool appliances in the care of their families and people in general. Through the use of a website and social media platforms Whirlpool continues to post to this day videos, pictures and stories about #EveryDayCare.

Touching posts, ads and videos opening peoples eyes to the deeper “why” of doing laundry, washing dishes etc. has had an impact on people who might not have even been in the market for new appliances. Granted Whirlpool’s sales rose 6.6% in the first six months after the campaign started, so certainly they can claim success on the sales side. All of this increase in sales couldn’t have happened with out Whirlpool being very knowledgable about their target client; Parents with young kids (65,7%), mainly mothers (76%) aged between 30-50, with an average income. Whirlpool didn’t stop there! They figured out the music the target audience was most likely to listen to, TV shows they watch and the most popular influencers. It is possible Whirlpool knows these folks better then they know themselves. Knowing the target consumers so well allowed Whirlpool to reach them with messages that hit home with them.

Whirlpools use of Facebook to reach out to and interact with has been overall effective, with 246,489 followers on their Facebook page. Though reading the page tells the story of how hard it truly is to change a conversation. To this day two years after the #EveryDayCare campaign started Whirlpool is still receiving angry comments about their customer service, poorly made appliances and other complaints. In fact almost every post Whirlpool makes get complaint/negative comments. Every negative comment receives a response (though they appear to be very scripted) and not always very well thought through (see example below).

Whirlpool is currently getting a lot of positive feedback via Facebook regarding the program started in 2016 to put washing machines in schools. Personal stories are being shared, people are reaching on behalf of their schools and the videos about this are being viewed in the hundreds of thousands and shared.

Whirlpools use of Pinterest on the other hand has been lackluster with under three thousand followers and only 5 boards set up (minimum of ten is recommended), with only a few Pins in each.  Doing a quick search of Whirlpool washers on Pinterest shows that others are Pinning about Whirlpool, though Whirlpool is not doing any re-pinning. Instagram is also not getting the attention that Facebook receives from Whirlpool or from Instagram users. With only 183 posts and 3,551 followers Whirlpool clearly doesn’t see Instagram as a high priority. However the complaints have followed them to Instagram.

I do not think Whirlpool can completely change the conversation, the complaints will continue know matter what. I think #EveryDayCare has over all been a success, though how none of the marketing reached me, a mother of five is interesting. I would recommend they consider using Facebook messenger to get the complaint conversations moved off of the comments, with the advances in messenger for businesses they may find messenger a very useful tool to employ. I am assuming that they are taking all of the feedback both negative and positive in to consideration on how to move forward with their campaigns, product design and strength as well as improvements to customer services.

 

Facebook Comments Conversation Example

David Glover I bought this whirlpool gold series piece of crap back in October 2016 it quit cooling in January 2017. After having whirlpool professional service guy come out he broke more parts . He didn’t fix it and left. After 2 months of playing phone tag he said I won’t be coming back. WE have a family of 7 sooo we lost our groceries and lived out of coolers. Repair man number two called and said parts are on order one week lead time . ONE MONTH LATER, the whirlpool says the repairman closed out the account. Finally the repairman comes back out and replaces all kinds of parts”MIND YOU KNOW ONE HAS YET TROUBLE SHOT THE ACTUAL PROBLEM”he then says all is well you’ll not have anymore problems…… WELL GUESS WHAT .. THIS PIECE OF CRAP IS NOT COOLING AGAIN.. Again groceries lost . I call whirlpool again I tell the lady on the phone , mam I’ve lost my groceries again. A family of 7 groceries trips are 350.00 , that’s 700.00 they offer me another extended warranty. This is a joke the only guarantee I see is that it’s a guaranteed piece of crap.. your customer service is just as bad as your product. This fridge cost 3500.00 I as well bought the whirlpool duet washer and dryer. Both of these have also been repair within one year of ownership. Why is whirlpool so crappy why can’t your professional service crew fix anything? why is your customer service soooo crapy ? Even your repairmen say you don’t give a rats tail about the customers. … you don’t deserve the right to put MADE IN AMERICA on your products

Whirlpool USA David, anyone would be frustrated given this situation with their Refrigerator. We can look into what we can do to help, but we will need your information to do that. We need your full model and serial number, your address, phone number, and date of purchase. Send to Whirlpool_Digital@Whirlpool.com or send us a private message with this information to help.

Whirlpool USA Thank you, David, and we will follow up shortly.

Like · Reply · May 24 at 8:15am

David Glover It’s Friday now ….. hmmmm how short is shortly??????? Yup this is typical whirlpool

Like · Reply · May 26 at 5:59pm

David Glover It’s Friday now ….. hmmmm how short is shortly??????? Yup this is typical whirlpool

Like · Reply · May 26 at 5:59pm

Whirlpool USA Hello David! We do greatly apologize for the delay. Someone will be reaching out to you on Monday. Thank you.

Like · Reply · May 27 at 8:21am

David Glover Hello … Monday is a holiday I’m sure that won’t happen

Like · Reply · May 27 at 9:04am

David Glover Hello … Monday is a holiday I’m sure that won’t happen

Like · Reply · May 27 at 9:04am

David Glover In case you forgot .. Monday is Memorial Day , we remember our servicemen and women who have served and are still serving this great country.

Like · Reply · May 27 at 9:07am

David Glover In case you forgot .. Monday is Memorial Day , we remember our servicemen and women who have served and are still serving this great country.

Like · Reply · May 27 at 9:08am

Whirlpool USA You are very correct, David! We are very sorry for the confusion. Our apologizes on the misinformation on the incorrect day. Someone will be reaching out on Tuesday. Once again, we are terribly sorry.

 

 

How Whirlpool Found Love in Unlikely Places Boosting Sales and Possibly Making the World a Better Place. (n.d.). Retrieved June 03, 2017, from http://blog.cubeyou.com/how-whirlpool-found-love-in-unlikely-places-boosting-sales-and-possibly-making-the-world-a-better-place/
Neff., J. (2015, June 08). Case Study: How Whirlpool Heated Up Sales by Warming Up ‘Cold Metal’ Retrieved June 03, 2017, from http://adage.com/article/cmo-strategy/whirlpool-heated-sales-reframing-cold-metal/298882/
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