How Reese Witherspoon’s coronavirus teachers giveaway went so wrong.

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It was a wonderful idea, until it wasn’t.

Sadly, what happened next was a perfect storm of events and errors that, together, ended up causing more harm than good.

The first thing that went wrong? A miscommunication. Even though the fashion label has an Instagram audience of over 700,000 and the backing of Witherspoon’s 24 million followers, the team of fewer than 30 employees said they simply weren’t expecting so many people to hear about the initiative, let alone apply.

“We felt like we moved too quickly and didn’t anticipate the volume of the response,” Marissa Cooley, the senior vice-president for brand marketing and creative at Draper James, told the Times.

“We were really overwhelmed. It was way more volume than the company had ever seen. We expected the single digit thousands.”

Thinking it’d be a small, grassroots kind of thing, Draper James mustn’t have thought…

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