It seems that customers are not fast to forgive nor forget products that spontaneously combust. The South Korean technology giant has slumped from 7th to 49th in the most recent US Reputation Quotient Ratings released by Harris Poll, after coming an impressive 3rd in 2015.
Down with a boom
The company’s fall from grace with American consumers comes in the aftermath of a global safety fiasco involving the company’s Galaxy Note 7 smartphone model. The problem? That the handsets became notorious for spontaneously exploding – so much more that they were banned from carriage on many airlines and eventually triggered a worldwide recall of the model that cost Samsung in the vicinity of $5 billion.
The Harris Poll survey aggregates the views 30,000 people each year on the 100 most visible brands in the United States, asking them to score companies based on seven criteria – social responsibility, vision and leadership, financial performance, products and services, workplace environment, and emotional appeal. The survey period for the most recent rankings – 28 November 2016 to 16 December 2016 – fell in the months after Samsung’s exploding phone recall. It also encompassed the probe into Samsung heir Lee Jae-Yong’s alleged connection to a corruption scandal involving South Korean president Park Guen-Hye.