Toyota Recall: A Case Study

When things went south for Toyota this year, they responded with massive advertising. My first reaction was "Where are they getting their advice from?" The TV spots are confessionals—"we're not living up to our own standards or to yours"—planting doubt in minds that may not have had a negative opinion of Toyota.

Is there a time to admit fault? Yes, of course. But does this mean positioning a company as one that has disappointed America? I don't think so. Far better to spend those advertising dollars reminding America of all that is good about Toyota (which after all has an excellent track record when it comes to quality) and how they are responding to the problems with their vehicles. While I'm not objecting to them taking a proactive stance, I don't believe there's ever a time to create more bad news than actually exists.