Last week, you learned the first two damage control techniques employed to defend the latest Teenage Ninja Turtles movie. In the second installment, you’ll learn that not only did the film hit huge box office numbers (even rivaling Guardians of the Galaxy) but also the third, final secret technique to saving a campaign under fire.

Third Mistake: Too New

Look everyone gets it. Times change, people change, culture change too. The first trailer gave some unclear shots with the turtles in them. The second trailer reveals the whole cast with a new and modern look, including Shredder and April. There are even talks that the film’s theme would emulate Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight minus the rubber suits.

But as nice and realistic it all was, the reception was obvious: Mixed. “What’s with the glasses?” “OMG! Shredder’s Megatron nao lulz!” Comments like these serve as painful evidence of how marketers can somehow be just detached from their target market (or at least parts of it).

The Damage Control: Just roll with it.

Oddly enough, the comments didn’t exactly stop a 3rd trailer from being released that just seemd to build upon what was already revealed.

Similar to marketing strategies, the best way to save a first impression is not just amend a few things but keep rolling in spite of it all. Repetition is also good as it shows how fast you can learn. After the first few mistakes, get back up, and keep improving. Criticism may not change but the persistence can pay off. Think about it:

  • Not all critics are right – Anonymous criticism can be well written but you’re just as much likely to encounter fly-by flaming.
  • You can’t please everybody – There’s a reason why boycotts don’t always threaten organizations. If the protests only come from the ones generating 20% of your bottom line, it’s not worth sacrificing the ones giving 80%.
  • Look at the bigger picture – The 80% form just a part of the bigger picture. Not even your customers are always privy to your long-term strategies. Focus on the goals when the criticism doesn’t matter.

In spite of the initial brace for criticism, the movie’s shocking financial success demonstrates that even rotten first impressions can be saved. Just don’t forget these teachings on damage control and it might just save your own campaign.