Saturday, April 14, 2012

Dania Furniture Advertises on Rush Limbaugh Show. Gets Lambasted By Everyone and Their Respective Moms...Plus A Major Advertising Fail on Google Adwords...

Dania Furniture's follies in advertising continue with the recent marketing debacle on The Rush Limbaugh Show, a conservative, political radio talk show.  On February 29, 2012, Rush Limbaugh said a bunch of terrible things about Sandra Fluke, a Georgetown law school student, who has been out/well-spoken in her advocacy of contraceptive coverage by all organizations who offer health benefits to their employees. Limbaugh continued making off the heezie statements about Fluke, until March 3rd, when he issued an apology. Despite this highly divisive political atmosphere, Dania Furniture did not pull advertising after the entire situation unfolded.

flush rush on facebook condemning dania furniture
A group known as Flush Rush, has formed, in response to Limbaugh's inflammatory commentary, singling Fluke out. They
are applying pressure on companies that advertise on Rush Limbaugh's show, to suspend all advertising. On their Facebook page, they specifically cite advertising for the "Dania" brand by their parent company, Scandinavian Designs (AKA Interline), which is the parent company of Dania, as well as Plummers and Scandinavian Designs.  Dania Furniture ran at least one ad between March 5-16 on KOA 850 AM in Denver, Colorado.

Furthermore, according to another cleverly titled anti-Rush Limbaugh group, Shush Limbaugh, Dania Furniture ran ads on March 5th and 6th in Portland, Oregon's radio station, 102.3 FM, KEX, during the Limbaugh's show. By March 5th, a number of major, national brands pulled their ads in response to a deluge of negative responses by users across The Internets.  These companies apologized for any misassociation or connection to Limbaugh's comments to their product(s) and/or service(s), and informed consumers that they were no longer participating in advertising programs on his show.  On the flip yet another revealing, poor social/business move, Dania Furniture kept running ads, despite the divisive rhetoric that persisted on the airwaves for three days. Nothing like polarizing your audience, eh, Dania Furniture CMO?

As illustrated above in our beautiful screenshot, users across the web have responded, by warning Dania of the impact of this advertising conundrum could result in shrinking sales that could domino into the entire Evil Interline Family crumbling before our very eyes, thanks to misguided dollars invested in fruitless advertising. Wow, who would've ever thought they could cause even more damage to their terrible reputation? The sky's no limit for them, apparently!

dania furniture's facebook teamIn Dania's defense, they mobilized and unleashed their Official Elite Facebook Squad® with an emergency, "war room" meeting in the Dania Furniture Media Center to formulate a strategy geared to rectify this major PR flub.

In response to this, and what users have been posting to their Facebook page, Dania published a nonsensical, canned response to upset users.  No apologies were made, but they simply stated that they've pulled their advertising dollars from the show (how long does it last?) and that they aren't supporting any "platform" or opinion.  They did not state when this exactly took place, whether on their website as a hanging PR piece; all that's acknowledged is their nauseatingly, poorly-written FB wallpost response, taken from a screenshot on March 23rd:

dania furniture's facebook page

Backlash has indeed been strong, and although it's been over a month since this took place, people are still livid about the entire situation. Consumers can be fickle, especially with high involvement products, like furniture, so it will be interesting to see how much impact this has on the perception of Dania Furniture as a complement to urban, progressive lifestyles. Lesson learned...well, for most companies, but probably not stubborn, fears-getting-better Dania Furniture idiots.

If it's not insult to injury, we also got a few good jabs at Dania. You see, Google contacted us and begged us to use a $200 advertising grant to use Adwords again.  They were so pleased with the results of us engaging in their Adwords program last year, that they sent us multiple requests to advertise.  As a gesture of good will to The Google, we decided to strategically place our ads right between Dania's ad, and their organic listing whenever someone searched for "dania furniture."  What's most awesome about this is that this was their first foray into search engine marketing, and based on our research of what they are doing...we can safely say that they are nauseatingly terrible at it!

dania furniture & dania screwedme advertising on google adwords

People loved our ads, and clearly loved the experience, as we gained hundreds of users that spent more than 5 minutes on our page! The ad shown above is our most successful ad to date, as you may have seen it run before previously. Unfortunately, they only advertised for a month or so, and have since ceased all search engine marketing campaigns. We doubt they had any way they could judge the efficacy of their online advertising efforts, aside from "awareness" or "branding" campaigns. You see, users can't even buy anything off their website. Nothing, and no uses of QR codes to date (that's a freebie, Dania). There's no way they can even understand if their advertising was working, and smart companies with an online presence never waste dollars on idiotic initiatives like that. Boy would we be freaking out if we served on the board for Interline/Scandinavian Designs!

Anyway, why should any company sell stuff online? It's not like there's a successful company that sells does it.