Sunday, April 17, 2011

Energizer Night Race Malaysia 2011

The recent weekend was abuzz with news about the poorly organized Energizer Night Race, held at Sepang on Saturday, April 16th 2011. I got to know about the news through a friend via Twitter, and boy, talk about a brand being flushed down the drain.

Apparently the race was so badly organized that the participants took their anger to the Energizer Night race Facebook page. Wave after wave of comments poured into the wall, all full of anger and frustration. Energizer really got hit badly in this tsunami, the brand has seriously suffered a major whipping. All thanks to the event company which they had engaged to manage the race. Some of the complains I read from their FB page were about:

1) No clear indications to direct traffic/race route.
2) Having to pay an extra RM 10 for parking.
3) Participants were yelled at, and called hooligans.
4) Goodie bag line was disorganized and resulted in many not getting it.
5) Not enough headlamps for the night run.
6) Not enough water stations were provided.
7) No proper medical support was made available.
8) Many did not receive their finisher medals, certificates etc.
9) Participants had to squeeze through a narrow tunnel (now famousl dubbed the "Tunnel of Death").
10) Comments were being deleted.

What we're witnessing is a the power of social media. Within minutes, the flood gates had opened and a brand is being swept into the grave. I seriously hope the people at Energizer do some form of damage control, because as of now, things seem to only be getting worse. News of deleted comments is spreading like wild fire, and it's only going to rub more people the wrong way.

I don't know if the FB page is managed by Energizer themselves, or by the event company they had engaged to organize the run, but one thing for sure.... Because of this poorly organized event, the brand has suffered a tremendous blow.

The strength of your brand is what your consumers determine it to be. Now with such bad publicity (no thanks to your event company, Expose Media, for screwing up your brand after this event), it's best to think about ways to counter this problem soon. An apology is not going to buy any hearts at the moment I reckon. Energizer should even consider sueing the event company for tarnishing their reputation now.

It's quite sad to see how some event companies are out to scam the public. I've heard about runs that were marred with bad management. Kinda kills the spirit of having fun during a run. Now I'm hoping NTV7's "Feel Good Run" won't suffer the same fate as Energizer. A blessing for hubby and me too, as we had thought of participating in this Energizer run but decided not too cos we both thought the fee was rather high. Otherwise I'll be one of the 10,000 peeps ranting about it!


Yes, I caught this on the news. =( It's really sad that such a vibrant event was sabotaged by an abysmal 'tidak apa' attitude.

Hopefully, the organizers will take note and do better next time.

@john yes it is quite disheatening to read such news. even more so for the Energizer brand. eventho they have decided to refund all participants, many r still angry & want more answers as to how the event organizer can screw things up. let's hope this is a wake up call to all brands out there, social media is real and it can either work for you or destroy you.