La Casera: Making a difference with social media crisis

By Zion Rufus

Ric Edelman once said, “The lesson you have to learn is to be aware of the incredible power of social media and the dangers of reacting to news that you haven’t verified.”

Some of the greatest advantages social media has offered marketers are how it has helped brands get closer to their publics, attract new customers, get customer feedback, build customer loyalty, increase their local and international market reach, and conduct market research. However, the downsides are just as huge.

Word on the street says, “Social media never forgets, negative news travels faster”, and it couldn’t be truer than the current backlash facing The La Casera Company after a buried 2019 case of improper disposal of expired soft drinks in Kogi State was exhumed to again make rounds on social media.

Today, as people hop on trends to promote their favorite brands, products, personalities, and celebrities by making viral pictures and videos and retweeting posts that pique their interests, others also feel a social responsibility to alert consumers on certain errors of these popular brands.

As advantageous as it may seem, this also means that seemingly harmless comments, pictures, negative opinions, baseless claims, false allegations, and unverified accusations that start with just one unsatisfied consumer, can end up becoming a huge brand reputation crisis.

Back in 2019, The La Casera Company, a company which has had a remarkable impact on the Nigerian Soft Drink landscape for two decades, dissociated itself from the allegations, while reassuring its teeming consumers of its uncompromising commitment to the health of the environment as well as the society.

Today, the beverage giant is yet again distancing itself from the social media post which appeared on the Nigerian WhatsApp space over the last few weeks showing improperly disposed packs of expired La Casera drinks and other apple brands being consumed in Kogi State.

The La Casera Company has a fully operational disposal process for Its non-conforming materials and products, as well as an effluent treatment plant in its factories. For the health and well-being of the society, the company fully reiterated its commitment to running completely clean and green operations, by applying the 3R principles of Reduce, Reuse and Recycle in its operational business model.

For 20 years, the company has continually conducted its business with the highest regard and in the best interests of all major stakeholders, including consumers, suppliers, distributors, marketers, business partners as well as the government, and has continued to partner with the appropriate regulatory bodies to adhere to, as well as improve on its EHS standards.

Big brands like Indomie, Coca-Cola, Pepsi, Uber, United Airlines, British Airways, Target, and Procter and Gamble amongst thousands of others have also had their fair share of social media crises. Social media crisis is inevitable and there probably won’t ever be an end to it. But how a brand manages its social media crisis makes all the difference.


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