Bank of America Got the Hint

So after weeks of hearing my friends bicker about Bank of America’s new debit card fee and the viral outbreak against the bank online, Bank of America dropped its plans yesterday to add the monthly $5.00 charge for debit card users. J.P. Following suit, J.P. Morgan Chase has decided to drop its plans to add a fee as well.

The company statement reads as follows:

“In response to customer concerns and the changing competitive marketplace, Bank of America no longer intends to implement a debit usage fee. We have listened to our customers very closely over the last few weeks and recognize their concern with our proposed debit usage fee. Our customers’ voices are most important to us. As a result, we are not currently charging the fee and will not be moving forward with any additional plans to do so.”

This story is very reminiscent of the recent Netflix fiasco that erupted: Company makes announcement. Customers across the country are enraged. Customers take their rage to social media. Company realizes the hole they dug for themselves. Company drops plans.

At least we know companies are taking consumers’ concerns on the web seriously and that they are beginning to understand the power of social media more than before. Bank of America better get the word out quickly because I already know a handful of people who are planning to leave the bank soon. I’d be interested to see how many customers they have lost since the initial announcement.

Kudos to BofA for resolving its PR crisis!

Speaking of PR crisis, this would be a nice time to plug my Halloween costume with the rest of the Hunter PR interns. We were struggling to come up with a group costume for the holiday, and I figured why not poke fun at our own industry? I constantly hear about PR case studies every week in class and thought of a fun and unique way to present them. What better way to showcase the case studies than in a #PRFail group costume?

PR Crisis from left to right: BPNetflixMotrinConAgra FoodsWalmart

Sometimes we just have to laugh at ourselves and what goes on in our industry. Happy November!

Nick Schweers