You may have read my colleague’s recent blog post about Kimbia’s “epic fail.” Kimbia is the Texas-based crowdfunding donation collection and management platform used for Give Local America, the single-day crowdfunding event for thousands of local nonprofits across the United States. In the early morning of May 3, the day for this year’s Give Local America campaign, Kimbia’s platform crashed and stayed down throughout most of the 24-hour giving period.
My colleague initially criticized Kimbia for being tight-lipped about the outage. And she wasn’t the only one.
This is really embarrassing for Kimbia. Biggest day of the year blew it https://t.co/Ti7YawXgLf
— FametoClaim (@FameToClaim) May 3, 2016
So when does Kimbia become a verb e.g. "Wow, you really kimbia'd that presentation, Bob. Clean out your desk."
— The Pizza Nola Gastronomic Universe (@PizzaNola) May 4, 2016
Well, about a week after the outage, Kimbia did go very public with how it was going to make concessions for its outage.
On May 9, Kimbia announced that its CEO would forfeit his salary for three months, and the company would donate his normal pay to groups that took part in Give Local America. Furthermore, the company said it would waive about $370,000 in fees, about one-third of the fees it would normally receive through Give Local America campaigns. Kimbia also announced it would offer its platform for free to participating nonprofits for the rest of the year. You can read the press release here.
— Jeff Herman (@HermanJeff) May 10, 2016
Although many argue Kimbia didn’t substantially address the issues it encountered on May 3 in the moment, it certainly made some very public concessions less than a week after the outage. In today’s world where literally a matter of minutes could make the difference between a PR fail and win, Kimbia seemed to have lost in the court of public opinion. But if this had occurred say ten years ago before the social media age took hold, would people feel differently about the incident? The saying “you never have a second chance to make a first impression” is especially relevant in today’s always-on social media world. What do you think? Has Kimbia redeemed itself from its “epic PR fail?”