CHICAGO (AdAge.com) -- In the aftermath of the earthquake in Haiti, Kraft, AT&T, UPS and others engaged in a well-meaning one-upsmanship of cash gifts, in-kind donations and matching programs to provide assistance in the country's hour of need. But in some cases, consumers inflated the marketers' generosity and, in others, spread misinformation about their gestures, forcing some well-intentioned brands to explain and adjust their goodwill strategies.
Upon first hearing the news of the earthquake, my immediate thoughts were for the safety of my family. Though far from poor, they own and operate several businesses in and around Port-Au-Prince, the epicenter. Are they alive? Was anyone hurt? I immediately looked up my relatives on Facebook and started posting messages.