Kmart’s Anzac Day backflip was good PR in action

While I’ve no idea what went on behind the scenes, it looks to me like Kmart’s rapid backflip regarding opening on Anzac Day is a classic of good crisis PR.  

It started to go wrong for the brand over the weekend, when it emerged that Kmart had applied for pre-1pm opening.

The story got big on Monday, with a single story on news.com.au alone pulling in 430 mostly angry comments (point A on the Google News chart).

Yesterday, Kmart executed an elegant reverse ferret.

But the announcement from Kmart is what impressed me. First, it came fast; second, the apology was fulsome; and third, the boss Guy Russo took personal responsibility (point B on the chart):

“I got this one wrong and on behalf of Kmart, I apologise to the RSL, retired and current members of the Australian Defence Force and the wider community for any offence that this application has caused.”

It looks to me like Kmart has handled the issue effectively, and I suspect we’ll now see it quickly go away.

If only every brand in a PR storm could act as decisively.

Tim Burrowes


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