Friday, February 09, 2007

Matthew 5:4

"Blessed are they that mourn: for they shall be comforted."

The death of anyone we know, even remotely through celebrity, is not a moment to invite cynicism. There's no way to truly understand an individual's response to loss and so I'm going to try to tread lightly here.

Anna Nicole died, you probably heard if you've read or seen any news yesterday. TrimSpa, the diet route she famously supported, shut down their site yesterday. Today, they put up a page in memoriam.

Of course, the elephant in the room is whether or not Trimspa killed her. Although I'm sure it would make a juicy story, let's hope not. Unfortunately, if a cause of death is not found, this elephant won't ever leave the room. It's a noteworthy risk when building your brand through a celebrity. That person's individual decisions now have ramifications on your brand. What do you do if they get charged with a crime, say something outrageously racist or unexpectedly die?

You do what TrimSpa did. You forgo the benefits of free PR and put up a touching gesture. They've also linked to messages of support sent by their visitors. As far as corporate response to loss goes, this is well done and earns my respect. Hopefully they'll also do something to take care of that new baby girl.

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