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#BoycottZomato: Marketing Lessons To Learn From Zomato’s Controversy On Twitter

| Published on August 4, 2019

Zomato recently gained a lot of support when it publically called out a guy who wanted to cancel his order and get a full refund because of the delivery guy’s religion.

Zomato‘s CEO, Deepinder Goyal, came forward and even tweeted stating, “We are proud of the idea of India – and the diversity of our esteemed customers and partners. We aren’t sorry to lose any business that comes in the way of our values.”

Later a tweet was made by Zomato‘s official account, “Food has no religion. It is a religion.” The tweets had instantly gone viral and people supported and praised Zomato‘s stand in the situation. But soon the support faded and twitter was trending with different hashtags for Zomato.

#BoycottZomato was the top Twitter trend in India two days ago, followed by #IStandWithAmit at number 2. All of yesterday, #ZomatoUninstalled was trending on Twitter, with people sharing screenshots and videos of them uninstalling the Zomato app. These trends have together gathered over 75,000 angry tweets in all, and Zomato’s Play Store Page has been hit with thousands of one-star reviews.

What bought this change in the tone for Zomato supporters?

Zomato Should Have Been More Cautious.

The customer might have been wrong but that does not mean that corporations can shame them publically. Zomato could’ve politely told the customer, one on one, that it wouldn’t be possible for them to carry out his request, and the matter could’ve ended there. But instead, Zomato chose to quote-tweet the tweet to its 1.4 million followers. This earned the company some free publicity but also gave the impression of a billion-dollar corporation taking on a single individual.

Practice What You Preach.

Zomato CEO Deepinder Goyal‘s tweet expressed that the brand is not afraid to lose business which conflicts with its values. His tweet got thousands of retweets, but people quickly figured out that Zomato didn’t care as much about its values as seriously as Goyal would have liked people to believe.

People quickly pointed out that Zomato runs operations in Qatar, where homosexuality is punishable by a seven-year prison sentence. People questioned why Zomato still operates in Qatar and hasn’t taken any stand against their harsh rules. Did their values not conflict in this situation?

Be More Considerate Towards Your Paying Customers Needs

Many people were quick to point out how Zomato had taken the least interest in their requests. In the past, Zomato had apologized to customers who’d made that demands that had nothing to do with their own food.

When a customer had been irate that the restaurant that he’d ordered from served pork in their outlet even though they had denied it to the customer, Zomato had called the incident “quite sad,” and privately told them that it would look into the matter. As such replies from Zomato began being retweeted, public outrage against the company grew. Zomato could’ve avoided this by better training its customer service personnel, and have standard responses to such requests.

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