Portables Caught in Inauguration Controversy

Would you cover up your company logo in order to land a big contract?
Portables Caught in Inauguration Controversy

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You want exposure for your company in order to generate new business, but you never want your restrooms to be too conspicuous.

During preparation for the U.S. presidential inauguration, which took place Jan. 20 in Washington, D.C., event staff reportedly covered up the company logo on the portable restroom doors.

It would appear event organizers thought the company name, Don’s Johns, too close to that of President-elect Donald John Trump.

Robert Weghorst, the chief operating officer of Don’s Johns, didn’t know the logos were being covered up until the AP reported on it, bringing in numerous phone calls and comments on the company’s social media accounts.

“We don’t know why it’s being done. We didn’t tell someone to do it,” Weghorst told media outlets. “We’re proud to have our name on the units.”

Don’s Johns has provided portable restrooms for many large events in Washington, D.C., including the 2009 and 2013 inauguration ceremonies for President Barack Obama.

No logos were taped over during the events for President Obama so Weghorst seemed surprised about the controversy this time around, despite the coincidence of name similarity.

Displaying logos on rented restrooms during events is a great way for companies to get their name in front of hundreds or even thousands of potential customers. Despite the logo controversy, winning a bid for such a large and high-profile event will bring plenty of recognition for Don’s Johns.

But smaller companies working events with significantly less media attention won’t get the same exposure, so displaying their name is important.

How do you handle situations where event organizers don’t want your logo or other branding visibly displayed on your restrooms? Do you walk away? Or compromise by placing decals on the interior?


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