Disappointment, Misleading Ads Leads to Nokia Exec’s Resignation

When Ilari Nurmi presented the new Nokia 920 last month to the media, many investors were left underwhelmed at the lack of details such as the launch date and the prices.

To make matters worse, Nokia’s product marketing, handled by Nurmi, came under fire for a misleading teaser video in which the company falsely showcased the abilities of the Lumia 920’ PureVision camera. The commercial showed a woman riding a bicycle being filmed about the 920 camera. After an investigation, it was revealed that the commercial and “video capabilities” were actually shot by a camera in a moving van.

So on Friday, Oct. 5, Nurmi announced that after 15 years with Nokia, he would be leaving the company. Nurmi confirmed the news to Reuters and through his Twitter account. The resignation overshadowed what was supposed to be a celebratory time as the brand was announcing its new Window 8 Lumia handsets.

Nokia would apologize in a blog post.

The news couldn’t have come as a worse time for Nokia. With the smartphone era off and running, Nokia has found itself trailing powerhouses Apple and Samsung. The latest developments have undoubtedly put a speed bump in Nokia’s plans to get back into the smartphone conversation.

The lesson for communicators is that if nothing else, consumers should trust what you’re telling them in ads, campaigns and on social media. The confidence of those who buy your products have in what you’re presenting makes you, the PR pro’s, job much easier.  If not, it can damage an organization's reputation, which will ultimately impact sales.

When a mistake happens, transparency and swift response will let consumers and the public know that the organization is aware of what’s going on, and will take the steps the necessary to fix the crisis and prevent it from happening again.

Or, communicators can avoid this dilemma altogether by being forthright in ads and presentations. 

Follow Jamar Hudson: @jamarhudson