Toyota Travails: Twitter over Facebook?

As Toyota’s recall travails deepen, it is interesting to observe the company’s use of social media to communicate with owners and the public.  As of today, the company appears to be fielding four official Tweeters, both commenting on changing events and thanking Twitterati for support and comments.  On Facebook, a box directs people seeking recall information directly to the Toyota website, but amidst the shrieking or supportive wall postings, there appears to be no official interaction.  We surmise that the company has decided to let its many fans handle the firefight on Facebook while concentrating resources on Twitter, more immediate and more beloved of politicians and reporters.  If this is the case, it will be interesting to see if other companies in crisis follow the same approach.  This is obviously a tough time for Toyota because extensive apparent quality issues violate their customers’ baseline of expectation which is quality and safety.  Judging by the flow of commentary on both Twitter and Facebook, many of them are willing to give the company a chance to make things right.


Tags: , , , ,

One Response to “Toyota Travails: Twitter over Facebook?”

  1. Jon Goldberg Says:

    This is interesting, Peter, and I think consistent with how other companies have viewed Facebook. For example, Coca-Cola very early on made clear that it considered a fan page to be something that belonged to fans, not the company, and that while they were happy to engage there they didn’t intend to manage it. Probably a smart approach.

    On a separate note, I thought Toyota’s “open letter” to customers earlier this week had some unfortunate dents, not the least of which was the line about how “stopping production is never an easy decision.” In my view, they violated the “people, property, money in that order” rule (AKA “don’t make your problems my problems.” They would have done much better with something like, “Nothing is more important to us than your safety. That’s why we’re shutting down production so that we can devote our full attention and manpower to putting things right.”

    Far classier, and nothing for the lawyers to get out of alignment about, no?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: