Opinion, Student/PR

A £4,500 Mistake Worth Making?

You’ve probably heard on social media or in the news about the notorious slip-up of Manchester-based establishment, Hawksmoor. And if you haven’t, basically a couple dining at the restaurant ordered a £260 Bordeaux of ‘the same vintage’ (alright for some, right?) and instead were given a £4,500, 2001 bottle of Chateau Le Pin Pomerol.

As somebody who’s worked in hospitality, I know how gut-wrenching the feeling is of making mistakes. But when it’s a mistake that costs your company thousands of pounds, well, I dread to think. Because of knowing this feeling all too well, my immediate thoughts were with the employee that made the mistake. Luckily, Hawksmoor quickly rushed to the case to assure social media that mistakes happen. And that they’re totally not angry.

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£4,500… For Millions More In Publicity Value

Seems like a fair deal to me.

It’s safe to say that the virality of this incident has put Hawksmoor on the map. The aforementioned tweet alone currently has over 60,000 engagements. That’s not to mention the attention generated across other social platforms. Oh, and pretty much every single publication you can think of too.

If we still used AVE (though thank the heavens we don’t) I’m intrigued to know the value. Millions, surely? The unintentional coverage this mistake has generated has been far and wide, and I think it’s fair to say that Hawksmoor has handed it tremendously too.

In fact, the only external backlash received comes from those who are voicing the question on pretty much all of our lips. “£4,500 for a bottle of wine?!” Critics and naysayers have asked the brand why they are stocking such elusive products of such high value, when Manchester is well-known to have one of the biggest homelessness problems across the entire UK. To which Hawksmoor has provided yet another quantified reply.

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The finer things in life are inescapable in their entirety. Even if they’re not something you can comprehend in your personal life, you know they’ll never cease to exist because there is a demand for them somewhere. And to be honest, I can’t argue with that. If you chose to spend your money on £4,500 wine, then fair play to you. That’s entirely your decision to make. To blame the establishment is ludicrous in my opinion, nevertheless, they’ve replied spectacularly and pretty much discounted all of the negativity against them. Which leaves only for good press and positive rewards, of which I’m sure they’ll receive plenty.

I mean, even my Dad appreciates the potential…

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So Was It A Mistake Worth Making?

I mean, I don’t suggest that every fine resturant across the country starts dishing out their prized beverages in the sake of publicity.

However, knowing the attention that Hawksmoor have cooked up, I can’t bring myself to say that this wasn’t a mistake worth making.

I don’t believe in AVE as a reliable method of evaluation, I don’t think any of us do anymore. But one thing I do believe is that the publicity that this restaurant has earned as a direct result of their oversight is something that will benefit them greatly. I’d not heard of Hawksmoor before a few days ago, I have now. I’m sure many others will be the same.

Not only has this put them on the map, but it’s also strengthened Hawksmoor’s brand image. Nobody can argue that they’ve handled the situation incredibly well. I think most restaurant owners would have been smashing plates in the back room without sitting down in a calculated manner and assessing the potential of the opportunity instead, as Hawksmoor has done. They sure know how to market themselves.

So reiterating their tweet, double chin-up to the server who made this infamous blunder; you’ve probably just made your company thousands more than a dusty bottle of wine ever could have.

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