The response probably did not need to come from their COO. Instead, all you have to do is look at some of the comments users are saying about this issue on the web.
The passion that you get from users representing real customers expressing themselves, has more value than any corporate apology video. When Toyota posted its apology video, it opened the floodgates for users to bad-mouth the brand on a global scale, which is what happened.
Allow users to defend the brand themselves, and allow conversation to happen naturally without forcing it. Brands will learn more about what users think when they are given the platform to be outspoken. Instead of posting the video on a platform where millions of users will see it, they should have identified the key forums/ communities where Toyota owners were already talking about the issue, and speak with them directly.
The sooner brands learn how to communicate with their audience in a more effective way, the sooner they will become more trusted and respected brands.
Adam Field, head of social media, Media Contacts