Spinmeisters facing a publicity crisis are advised to live by the “Golden 24.” What you say to the public in the first 24 hours of a crisis is all that counts. Everything afterwards is just mopping-up. In the first 24 after CNBC aired its expose on self-firing Remington 700s, the gunmaker failed to get out a simple message: the Model 700 is safe. Instead, they attacked the network for its “anti-gun” bias and vilified the network’s experts as ambulance chasers. Both of which were true, but unimportant . . .
The world has moved on, but Remington hasn’t. Their 700 defending website continues to grow; there are over 600 videos waiting for surfers to press play. Methinks the company budgeted a certain amount of money for damage control, and, as is the way of large companies (and government programs) they’re going to spend it.
The video above is titled “Don’t rely on your gun’s ‘safety'”—complete with sarcastic quote marks around the word ‘safety.’ It’s one of Remington’s “ten commandments of gun safety.” Also true. Also not what 700 buyers want to hear.
The Freedom Group’s anchor brand has prepared a much more useful “he said, we say” document responding to the CNBC’s allegations on a point-by-point basis. [Click here to download.] Perhaps they should have released this document and called it good . . .