Trouble Brewing for Keurig: How the massive K-cup disaster could have been avoided
May 11, 2015
This post originally appeared on CustomerThink on May 9, 2015.
“Quite honestly, we were wrong. We underestimated the passion the consumer had for this. We missed it. We shouldn’t have taken it away. We’re bringing it back.”
These are Keurig CEO Brian Kelley’s words to market analysts last week, when he admitted it was a mistake to discontinue the “My K-Cup,” thereby preventing consumers from having a wider range of coffee options.
Unfortunately the coffee machine manufacturer learned its lesson the hard way by not listening to the Voice of the Customer. Sales of Keurig machines and accessories dropped by 23 percent last quarter, resulting in a 10 percent fall in stock price. Now that the company has announced its plans to begin selling the product again, it still might be too late to win back a significant portion of their customer base.
This crisis could have been easily averted if Keurig had conducted a sentiment analysis on customer feedback. Data from social media, surveys, review sites, inbound emails, the call center and many other sources would have likely produced a spike in negative sentiment about the discontinuation of the My K-Cup product. Armed with these insights, the Keurig product team would have been able to address the issue sooner, resulting in a less severe loss of sales. Better yet, an early sentiment analysis would have likely revealed a positive sentiment about the My K-Cup product, and Keurig would not have decided to discontinue it. In this scenario, the situation would have been avoided entirely.
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Elizabeth Clor is the Sr. Director of Content Marketing and Communications at Clarabridge. In this role, she is responsible for solidifying Clarabridge’s position in the marketplace as the leading Customer Experience Management (CEM) technology vendor. Elizabeth has 17 years of experience in high-tech marketing and communications, and is a regular contributor to various marketing publications. She holds a B.A. of English from the University of Virginia.