This post is by Jim Horton from Online Public Relations Thoughts
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Build-A-Bear Workshops conducted a promotion that was too good to work and now has to deal with the wrath of disappointed customers. The creative idea was a "pay your age" discount. Rather than a usual price range of $20 to $35, a parent could get a bear for a three-year-old for just $3 or for a five year old for just $5. It worked too well. Long lines of customers formed at its stores and the company was forced to shut down the promotion, leaving scores of potential buyers disappointed and angry. There was no way of knowing in advance that its idea would turn into a monster. There are no good ways to forecast foot traffic for a new promotion as Victoria's Secret recently learned. One proceeds with hope that it will work. When it does as it did for Build-A-Bear, company has to be ready to satisfy its customers. Should Build-A-Bear try the idea in the future, it will be prepared but for now, it has to deal with a PR problem.