Responding to the consumer: When and how firms should react to criticism

Smart corporations don't just launch new products, they even tweak entrenched ones when need arises

At what point should corporations take the call to respond to criticism and what does it take to react quickly?
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At what point should corporations take the call to respond to criticism and what does it take to react quickly?

Shubhomoy Sikdar
When Hindustan Unilever de­cided to drop the word “Fair” from the well-en­trenched Fair & Lovely, it explained its decision using the terms “inclusive” and “diverse”. That it was facing sustained criticism for promoting “fairness” as a virtue was known, but whether the Black Lives Matter movement provided a strong final nudge to take such a drastic step remained unaddressed in its communication.

Either way, here was a company that responded to criticism taking a major step as did Nestle by taking off its instant noo­dles Maggi — when it faced both regula­tory pressures and public outcry — in 2015 or

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First Published: Jul 16 2020 | 6:07 AM IST

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