Domino’s Facebook Failure: You Love our Pizza? We’re Sorry!

Domino’s Pizza, what were you thinking? In an example of a social media rapid response gone awry, the pizza–delivery chain delivered what appeared to be an automated—and incorrect—response to a Facebook compliment, and the world took note.

A Facebook user and clearly happy Domino’s customer, Jeaneth Manzaniita Tavares, wrote on the company’s Facebook wall,  “Best pizza ever! Pan pizza Keep up the good work guys!” To which Domino’s replied, “So sorry about that. Please share some additional information with us so we can have this addressed.”

Indications were that it was an automated response—the kind of thing that’s exactly what communicators should not do on social media. How could it have been otherwise, unless some Domino’s employee has a supernatural ability to detect sarcasm?

The company went to some lengths to correct itself, first claiming—tongue-in-cheek—that what it meant was that Domino' was sorry that it took Tavares so long to discover how good Domino’s was. And later, the company told Digiday that it was a simple goof by an employee at its Ann Arbor, Michigan, headquarters.  

I suppose a human might have grabbed and posted the incorrect response. But either way, it’s a bad use of social media. Social is a revolutionary tool that allows brands to engage with their audiences—and social events that go either really well or really badly usually get amplified far beyond the gravity of the actual event.

There are a few simple but important lessons for communicators:

  • Be ready to engage on social.
  • Make sure your tone is appropriate to the nature of the communication.
  • Get management on board if necessary.
  • Get it right.
  • Make sure humans respond.

Follow Tony Silber: @tonysilber