Follow up to that WBZ story about Saab and other ‘declining’ brands

I think we can all feel a little fortunate that Kevin Q pointed out the WBZ-TV story about brand being phased out that was being planned for airing in the Boston market.
With Kevin pointing it out, we were able to take a little action and from the comments we received on site from WBZ, those actions were directly responsible for them altering the story.
You can watch the final edit on video here (or read it in text form, here)
It’s a good thing, because that story spread to a number of other markets – like Los Angeles, Milwaukee and others.
Of course, it would have been better if they hadn’t mentioned Saab at all, seeing the brand is transitioning and not being phased out in any way at all. Volvo were mentioned in the promo Kevin heard and they seem to have been removed all together.
Perhaps the reason Saab were still included was because of the video they footage they shot with a Saab-owning lady named Mara Woloshin. Mara was rightly concerned about here dealership closing and the increased distance she’d have to travel to service her car. Still, it’s not fitting in with a story on brands like Pontiac and Saturn being closed.
One of the annoying things about all this is that a little bit of digging indicates that Mara’s video footage appears to have been included out of convenience.
One of our commenters, HughW, managed to track Mara down and contact her. She was quite possibly a little surprised to hear about the story in the end…..

Thanks much for the email…I WAS concerned, VERY CONCERNED when the story was done, it was a few months ago when GM gave up on selling the company.

So the interview footage was taken when Saab were being closed, but used when Saab are being sold.
These are the things that get me frustrated about dealing with the press.
I guess it fleshed the story out a little more, having a third brand feature in the story. but the association, having Saab in the same story as Pontiac and Saturn, is a damaging one and totally unnecessary.
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By the way, there should be no complaints about what Mara’s said on the video. Her concerns were quite justified. She was asked a question and answered.
The problem is the way the media have used the video and the chance it has to spread a damaging message through syndication.
I guess it highlights the importance of being an ambassador for the brand – noticing when things aren’t right and taking courteous actions to correct them.

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