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So this is what mainstream media (MSM) means when they say "the company was not available for comment at press time." Pretty reckless of Whole Foods PR department if you ask me.


The video below, about shopping at Whole Foods, is part of a what appears to be a meme called The WTF!!? Network that is almost as strange as John Mackey's sock puppeting.
I could just as easily have had a stock-damaging scoop as a silly video site when I called Whole Foods unresponsive PR department.
The videos on the WTF!!? Network site are way too lame to be part of a company-sanctioned "viral", but I thought I'd ask them what they thought about the site. After all, we bloggers are often accused of not doing our own reporting. :>)The most sophisticated (and I use that term very loosely) video on WTF!!? is Jeff & Jake Go To Whole Foods. The rest are just downright strange.
Videos: Amusing. Press Contacts, Not So Much
What's Next Blog reader Bill Stiller said in email, "maybe they're trying to reach a younger demographic." And this would just be a silly little post except that I tried to contact Whole Foods PR people through the press room on their website, and the result was not funny.
One of the listed contacts is on maternity leave til October, so the contact list is out of date even though Whole Foods is very much in the eye of a media storm. While I did identify myself as a member of the media, I did not say why I was calling when I left a total of five messages for Whole Foods PR people, none of whom were at their desks. I called the regional contact person at the number on the site and was on hold, and passed to four different people before I was given another number to call where I got an answering machine. Etc, etc.
Dear Whole Foods: your PR has to move at the speed of the Internet!
Of course Whole Foods they're getting a lot of press calls with their $565 million planned purchase of rival Wild Oats on court-ordered hold, but that would seem all the more reason to have someone in PR get back to someone who identifies herself as a blogger.
Anyhow, if you've ever filmed yourself shopping at Whole Foods in your underwear, here's the place to post your video.
UPDATE: As I was editing this, I did get a call back from Fred Shank, Whole Foods PR Manager. Well over an hour after the first of the five messages I left.

Continue reading "Slow Moving PR Department Could Cause Whole Foods More Harm" ... Read the full article

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ABOUT THE AUTHOR

B.L. Ochman is a social media marketing strategist for S&P 500 companies, including McGraw Hill, IBM, Cendant, and American Greetings. She publishes What's Next Blog and Ethics Crisis, where readers can confess their worst ethics transgressions and others can rate them on a scale of one to ten. She also blogs for MarketingProfs Daily Fix Blog.


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