In the past few years, exercise equipment maker Peloton relied on an aggressive and clever marketing strategy that persuaded many people to purchase its products. Along the way, the COVID-19 pandemic fueled more sales as an increasing number of people skipped their on-site gym workout routines only to stay home with their dependable Peloton treadmills.
However, along the way Peloton suddenly found itself in a crisis, scrambling to explain what was wrong with some of its products because an infant died, and an estimated 70 people were injured while using them. It was a quandary faced by any company that has introduced a defective product in the market. And, after weeks of encouragement to recall two types of treadmills, Peloton finally did in early May.
Negligence and responsibility
Whenever a company finds itself in the crosshairs regarding the safety of its products, it must explain what happened. And just as in Peloton’s situation, such companies discover – often simultaneously with the public — that their products failed specific safety standards and consumers have been hurt or even died. Negligence is at the root when a defective product hits the market. And someone is responsible.
After some hesitation, New York-based Peloton on May 5 finally announced its recall of the company’s Treat and Treat+ treadmills. However, the company’s declaration came nearly a month after the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission released a video of a young child getting trapped on a Peloton treadmill while playing on it.
Companies like Peloton worry about their reputations. But what about worrying about the public? These are the very people who played a major part in the success of their products. Not only have consumers got a bum deal, but they also pay for defective products in ways that they never should.