United’s high cost of NOT doing the right thing

Posted by Ruth Atherley of AHA Creative Strategies on April 20th, 2017

Unless you have been living under a rock, you probably know about the challenges that United Airlines has experienced recently. While one incident garnered the most news coverage and criticism on social media, several situations that could have been avoided, had they been handled differently, have come up and have shown the ugly underside of the culture of the organization. And it has cost them dearly – financially (their stock has dropped in the hundreds of millions) and with the long-term damage to their brand.

The biggest incident, with a 69-year-old doctor being physically assaulted and dragged off the plane, …

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#UnitedSUCKS – Part II

Posted by Ruth Atherley of AHA Creative Strategies on November 27th, 2014

In my last post, we were just about to board our flight from San Juan to Houston to connect to Vancouver. In writing this installment, I realized it was going to take three blog posts to cover it all. This story of poor service has too many elements and I don’t want to jam them all in and overwhelm you.

As we waited to board the plane, the United representative at the gate announced that the flight was overbooked and they were offering $300 per person for someone to take a later flight. I thought that was interesting because the …

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#UnitedSUCKS – Not a good brand reputation (but true)

Posted by Ruth Atherley of AHA Creative Strategies on November 19th, 2014

I travel quite a bit for business and pleasure, and I have to say my most recent travel on United Airlines (from San Juan, Puerto Rico to Vancouver) was the worst experience I have ever had on an airline. #UnitedSUCKS (the trending hashtag) should be painted on their airplanes. Talk about the inability to deliver on a brand promise – although I have to admit, I am not sure they actually have a brand promise, understand, or even care about what their brand reputation is. Their customer service was so shockingly bad that it almost felt like we were being …

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How many viewers does it take for it to matter?

Posted by Ruth Atherley of AHA Creative Strategies on July 07th, 2009

There is a good customer dissatisfaction video on YouTube about a band member that had his guitar damaged when flying United Airlines. According to the video, there were witnesses to baggage handlers throwing the guitar and taking absolutely no care with it. Currently, there are only a few hundred views of this video, but many, many comments – most of them saying they are appalled at how United has handled this issue.

Apart from being an interesting (and entertaining) video made by a dissatisfied customer, this also brings up something that we have recently been discussing here at AHA Creative …

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