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#RetailFail – Has It Happened to You?

#RetailFail – Has It Happened to You?

Nobody’s perfect. Grammar errors, misspellings, and other communication snafus aren’t limited to the digital world. Store signage and displays that get it wrong occur every day, and if you’re ‘lucky’, a customer will snap a picture and share it online tagged #RetailFail.

[Tweet “The saying there’s no such thing as bad publicity only goes so far.”]

As Forbes magazine reports, #RetailFail includes the expected share of misplaced apostrophes and misspellings  – mess up just one letter in the word “Duck” and watch the internet go crazy – as well as more serious customer complaints. One customer used #RetailFail to document an hours-long drama where his mother’s couch failed to be delivered as promised.

The saying there’s no such thing as bad publicity only goes so far. If you’ve gotten caught in a #RetailFail moment, it can be an overwhelming experience. These posts are often funny, and it’s not unusual for them to be shared thousands of times. Retailers who have been in this spot report feeling a mix of emotions, including embarrassment, shame, and anger.

No matter what you’re feeling, what has happened has happened. The first thing to do is to correct the situation if it hasn’t been addressed – this goes both for displays gone wrong and disgruntled customers. The second is to let it go as much as you can: there’s no effective way to remove or erase pictures from the internet in most cases.  If the issue in question centers around a customer service concern, you may want to create a response addressing how the issue was successfully resolved to use as needed on your website and social media. In the case of poorly spelled signage or unfortunate design choices, it’s more important to focus on not making a repeat appearance on #RetailFail.

The easiest way to do this is to implement a policy where all signs & displays are checked by somebody other than the person who set it up before it’s seen by the public. Everybody needs an editor, and a second set of eyes can see things that the first person missed. We also recommend having an employee or trusted friend with a really twisted sense of humor review things – catching the inadvertently sexual, scatological, or inappropriate meaning in a display or signage can save a lot of online embarrassment.

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Creative Director/Senior Designer

Tom DiGrazia

With over a decade and a half of professional design experience, Tom brings his knowledge of design principles and focus on user experience to every aspect of his contribution to TTG. Paying special attention to each client’s brand, personalized needs and individual interests, he strives to create compelling concepts utilizing intuitive and highly-refined design solutions. In addition to traditional and digital design work and oversight at TTG, Tom also boasts a wide portfolio of web development projects with the company, allowing him to stretch his CSS and HTML skills across multiple platforms and disciplines. He feels that being a designer in the digital landscape of websites, eCommerce solutions, email marketing platforms and social media, it is important to understand the code that goes into these areas as it assists his ability to tailor designs specifically targeted to achieve the best end result and further builds understanding and communication with backend development teams.

In his off hours, Tom is an avid pop culture enthusiast, staying up to date on the latest shows, films, comics and games. He can also typically be found taking part in a whole host of artistic activities that help him further stretch his creative legs. Regardless of the activity, Tom is always accompanied by his dog, Eli, and his cat, Tib.

Design, Photography, Illustration, Digital Imagery Manipulation, Wesbite Development

Photoshop, Illustrator, InDesign, Lightroom, HTML/CSS, Wordpress


Courtney Dumont

As Senior Marketing Strategist & Analyst at Technology Therapy Group, Courtney is energized by the ability to flex both her left and right brain daily. Courtney discovered her passion for Marketing at Bryant University, where she spearheaded research on students’ perceptions of Social Media Marketing for her Honors Capstone Project. After graduating Bryant in 2012, she joined the Technology Therapy team, where she’s honed her skills in social media, search and social advertising, email marketing, SEO, and more.

Since joining the team, Courtney has created digital marketing strategies and managed campaigns for clients across the country, ranging from plastic surgery centers, to jewelry stores, to construction companies. With a cohesive, cross-channel approach and a focus on data-driven decision making, she has increased their leads by up to 217%. But Courtney doesn’t leave her zeal for social media at the office; she also runs a local foodie Instagram account with her husband to document their meals across Rhode Island and beyond. Check them out: @hoppilyfed.

Marketing Strategy, Data Analysis, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Social Media

Google Analytics, Google Ads, Facebook Ads, Facebook Creator Studio, Instagram, Klaviyo, Mailchimp, Emma Mail, Google Data Studio, WordPress, YouTube, LinkedIn, Facebook, Microsoft Office