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A public relations fiasco erupted online for Ryanair a couple of weeks ago when a blogger found a bug in their booking system and wrote a cheeky blog post about it.
Instead of thanking him for taking the time to point the error out, a member of Ryanair staff instead chose to abuse the blogger in question - leading to a raft of comments, blog posts about how badly Ryanair treats customers and even articles in the mainstream press such as the Times and The Telegraph.
What did Ryanair do to diffuse the situation? Well, they issued a statement referring to bloggers as "idiots" and "lunatics" and said they didn't need their custom.
This is not really the way to manage your reputation online - Ryanair has not only offended the millions of bloggers - but has shown that they really don't make customer satisfaction a high priority.
But it doesn't have to be that way.
How to manage your reputation online with a touch of class.
Where Ryanair has got things totally wrong, over the weekend, indie rock band Franz Ferdinand have shown us how to get online reputation management right - and in doing so have won the respect of local Manchester bloggers.
Having attended a Franz Ferdinand gig on Friday and having been disappointed with the sound, I wrote a blog post about the experience on my personal blog - pointing out how angry I was that the band would choose to save some money rather than use the proper soundsystem provided by the venue.
As a professional copywriter and search marketer, I may have exaggerated slightly and attempted to linkbait with a subheading which accused them of ripping off fans to save money.
On Sunday morning I woke up to a comment from someone purporting to be Alex Kapranos, lead singer of Franz Ferdinand, offering an explanation of why the band travel with their own soundsystem, how their soundman sets up at gigs and essentially saying he was hurt that I thought he didn't care about his fans when they go to great lengths to deliver a good show.
Naturally, I was skeptical it was really him, but after Tweeting the situation to some other local bloggers, looking at the IP address for the comment and using the common sense that if it were a troll, the comment wouldn't have been quite so well thought out and sensible, I wrote a response, explaining that it was nice that he'd offered a response but I still had issues with the fact the sound had spoiled the gig. I also tweeted about the fact he'd responded.
The reaction from the bloggers who saw my tweet was positive as they were impressed by his willingness to offer an explanation.
I have this morning (Monday) received a second comment from Mr. Kapranos, offering further detail - and in a sincere and polite enough way that not only has he won my admiration for his willingness to carry on a reasonable discussion with a blogger - and treat the complaint as worth dealing with - but I've even edited my post to reflect that fact.
It only took him a few minutes to do, but he's managed to turn some negative publicity for Franz Ferdinand (the blog post in question is currently ranking at #1 in Google for "Franz Ferdinand gig review") into a positive situation and won some serious goodwill in the process.
Who says you can't learn anything useful from rock n roll, eh Ryanair?