Today I got an e-mail from a service I was using as there was going to be some downtime. As expected the company sent people messages on why there was going to be a downtime. The thing was the reason sounded a bit sensationalized as they were stating that their servers were being targeted by an attack and other factors like those. Afterwards they were telling people to sign up for their Facebook fan pages as an alternative way to get updates as well as the chance to win prizes.
Maybe I am wrong but it seemed more like something happened such as the business is going through financial trouble and so this story was created so that hopefully people understand. I was then thinking why is it that I was so suspicious as they have to have done something to generate that feeling amongst the customer. My first thought was that they do offer inexpensive services such as hosting where companies tend to oversell and so in my mind it is not uncommon to see a degrade in service as a result and no company would ever want to admit that.
I guess the other big factor is the timing in which they tried to advertise its social media pages as it seemed a bit too coincidental on top of the fact that their main site was still up. I was trying to think what one could do to minimize this type of thought that people may have and I think nowadays with all of the options available something like having the owners of the business updating people in real time to show say the damage and the progress on what is being done is a good way to show that the situation is genuine and that they are trying everything to get things up.
Without doing something like that I feel the situation is like a company saying the water supply is in hazard at the moment and so no one will have clean water. However, everyone in the company seems to have an adequate supply for themselves. Not a good time to show that your situation is completely different from what is happening to your customers.