Dana Severson

Copywriter | Marketer

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Building Brands One Word at a Time

Yet Another 3 Social Media Mistakes to Avoid

By Dana Severson

 

I know, I’m starting to sound like a broken record when it comes to social media. But it’s fast becoming the marketing method of choice for many businesses. Twitter, Facebook and all the other social channels are a quick and easy way to stay connected with an audience and help build brand awareness.
 
Unfortunately, the casualness of being social has led many of us to not always think things through. And informality has a way of increasing the chances of making a mistake.
 
Mistake #1: Timing
It’s difficult to keep up with what’s going on in the world. Things happen almost every day, and some events can change seemingly harmless tweets into ones made in very poor taste. The morning after the Aurora, Colorado, shooting, a post surfaced on American Rifleman’s twitter feed:
 
          “Good morning, shooters. Happy Friday! Weekend Plans?” 
 
Now, I’m assuming this was a scheduled tweet, but if you’re using an automatic social service, make sure you know what you’re saying at all times.
 
Mistake #2: Trivializing
Having a sense of humor is great. It can humanize a brand. But when a marketing ploy is wrapped in a joke that trivializes something happening in the world, you can easily come off as callous and hurt your business. Soon after Hurricane Sandy made shore, Urban Outfitters tweeted:
 
        “This storm blows (but free shipping doesn’t)! Today only…” 
 
To make matter worse, they ended the post with #frankenstorm. But they weren’t alone. American Apparel did something similar, posting:
 
        “In case you’re bored during the storm. 20% off everything for next 36 hours.”
 
C’mon folks. We all know better—or at least I hope we do.
 
Mistake #3: Overreacting 
I have to admit; I’m a sucker for people who overreact. It’s a thing of beauty. One of my guiltiest of pleasures is The Real Housewives of Beverly Hills. I mean, those gals have a real knack for blowing things out of proportion, and it makes for good TV. But it doesn’t do much for your reputation on social channels.
 
After an unsatisfied customer posted a bad review of her meal at Pigalle, the chain responded with:
 
       “hey sandy, go f#&k your self! if you have any questions on how to proceed”
 
The public has every right to complain or opine on social channels, and you have the right to respond as you see fit. But it’s probably better to address the complaint rather than fuel the fire. 

 

Post originally published at Beneath the Brand.

 

Copyright 2007-2014.  Dana Severson | Freelance Copywriter & Marketer.

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