GoDaddy’s had a hell of a day after a video(not for weak stomachs) of CEO Bob Parsons killing an elephant on vacation has gone viral. I wanted to do a quick video to recap the story and also show how users around the world as well as people with massive online influence such as Peter Shankman – are giving this story legs, and how it will certainly affect GoDaddy’s bottom line and brand rep.
Lesson: Your personal life and your digital life are not separate. And when you’re a CEO, small business owner, or employee that can have big implications on your business’ reputation and bottom line. Keep in mind that this hasn’t even been out there for 24 hours…. One Godaddy competitor has already started running a Domain Transfer special where they will donate $1 for each domain transferred to them to save the Elephants-gimicky for sure, but I promise they’ve seen a spike in business today (Thanks Alex G and Erika for pointing that out).
What’s your take? Is a situation like this likely to make you move your domains? Or is it not enough to affect a purchasing decision? Does it affect the way you see GoDaddy? Fire away in the comments.
UPDATE: Mashable has a good follow up piece to this with Parsons explaining in greater detail the situation and circumstances surrounding the hunt and says that the herd was destroying the crops for local villagers, which is why they were allowed to hunt. It is certainly a more complicated issue than what’s shown in the video, but my point with this post is that perception is reality in many cases and when a video or story like this goes viral, a company needs to be out in front and fast. Regardless if the hunt was with the bet of intentions – regardless of whether Parsons helped save a village and their crops – the headlines and tweets all around the web are still ‘Godaddy CEO shoots elephant.’ We’ll see how well his explanation of the hunt gets passed around today.