The BP Oil Spill in the Gulf of Mexico is unprecedented causing untold damage to the water, the environment and the lives of the population surrounding the gulf.  It’s long term affects on other areas of the world are still unknown.

Earlier I wrote about how poorly BP was handling the customer satisfaction and publicity of its oil spill and its actions to contain the oil spill, stop it completely, clean up the mess and work with residents in the Gulf area to help them financially and otherwise through this terrible ordeal. Most of what I wrote was not very complimentary.

I have recently discovered  videos that are far more positive, and can help the reputation and public image of BP.  But BP still is missing the mark on the publicity surrounding these videos.

1. An Interview with Bob Dudley, the new President and CEO of BP’s Gulf Coast Restoration organization.

This video is on the front page of the BP’s web site .

Notice that Bob is from Mississippi. He looks and speaks like an American and clearly his target audience is Americans. It’s a long interview but with Bob shows far more empathy than Tony Hayward, CEO of BP, seemed to have  done when he spoke at a US Congressional hearing in June 2010.

2. Relief Well Operations Overview – Kent Wells and Relief Well Team – 27 June 2010

Here is a short video that shows the team working on one of the relief wells. It shows the dedication of the BP team, the plan and the execution so far. Speaking is Kent Wells,  Sr Vice President, Exploration and Development who seems to be American (no British Accent) and he is very believable. One gets the impression that there are BP employees working hard to solve this problem. It puts human faces to the work effort. It shows the work site. One gets the impression that we all want their efforts to succeed. It  can change the way people think about BP.

But this video is not easily found. If you run a search engine query on Relief Well, it does not come up on the search page. I cannot embed the video on this blog as the code to do that  is not provided. I have some knowledge of internet marketing so I looked for what keywords are stored on the web page that stores the video and there are no keywords that would help a search engine find the video. It’s only publicity  is a line item on the BP home page and a green box near the bottom of the page.

3. Ready for the Storm – Mike Utsler – Incident Commander, Houma, LA

Here’s another video showing how BP is preparing to handle Hurricane season in the Gulf.  Good content but not search engine friendly, so it won’t show up on Google (and other search engine searches) and the customers and stakeholders of BP won’t necessarily find it. I cannot include it in this blog as they have not provided the code.  There is a link to this video on BP’s home page under Gulf of Mexico response.

Videos can go viral and are excellent public relations,  reputation management,  marketing and sales tools But it appears that the folks managing BP’s websites are not familiar with how to make these videos work for them in the universe of public opinion.

4. Making it Right – Beaches – Keith Seilhan, Beaches Cleanup

Here’s a fourth video, found at the bottom of the BP home page on beach clean up operations. The speaker, Keith Seilhan, is an American. He starts the video  by saying he is a local and vacations on the Gulf Coast.  It’s a good video but hard to find  on the web using web search and not search engine friendly (no keywords to describe it) and not available to put on websites like mine so you can read it without leaving my website. All BP  provides is the ability to link to their video on their web site.

Even the video pages have no links to others stories on the BP website.

BP  is a company in crisis mode and they are reacting on many fronts with actions and communications.  With some basic internet marketing and search engine optimization techniques, the value of the communications BP has prepared for customer satisfaction, reputation management and public relations could be significantly improved.


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Adele Berenstein

Adele Berenstein is an Experienced Customer Satisfaction Executive, recently retired from a Large Global IT Organization after a long productive management career including Sales, Marketing, Services, teaching and education center management and most recently, 19 years in customer satisfaction management. She turned around divisions with customer satisfaction problems, implemented measurable improvements and management systems, and implemented programs to prevent problems from ever affecting customers.

4 Responses to “BP Oil Spill – Do these Videos improve its reputation?”

  1. Ed Burghard Says:

    I think the choice of a credible organization like PBS was very smart. I also liked the inclusion of affected people with real problems asking the tough questions that is on everybody’s mind. I also think the casual look versus the corporate suit was a good choice to increase the chance of connecting with the public. Net, a good attempt as you indicated. But, the execution ultimately falls short because of the video length and difficulty to stream without excessive buffering. I also wonder if the message would be more believable if the organization was not part of BP, but rather a public/private partnership with funding from BP.

  2. Carlee Nesvig Says:

    BP says that the oil spill has stopped leaking. Can we believe them after they lied about that photo?

  3. Adele Says:

    Hi Carlee

    Thanks for your comment.

    I think the oil spill can be seen from the surface. So if it has stopped, then boats and planes flying overhead can see if it has stopped. So far, the indications are that the leak has been stopped, at least temporarily.


  4. Bob Dudley replaces Tony Hayward as BP CEO after Oil Leak capped | Customer Satisfaction and Reputation Management Says:

    […] effective Oct 1, 2010. Bob Dudley is already known to the US public. He is featured in a video in this article on this blog and headed up the Gulf Coast Restoration […]

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