Social Media is a very powerful marketing tool used by companies. Today it is a big part of the companies marketing mix to sell, promote & communicate to their customer base and an extended customer base. However, because of the nature of the internet a single post on social media can go viral which can either be a great thing for the company or it can cause irreversible damage. Below are a few brands and public figures that have demonstrated perfectly how not to use social media…

Global Village Duluth
Global Village Duluth came under heavy criticism during Martin Luther King day when they had the great idea to commemorate the day by offering ‘25% off everything black’. No surprise that this post garnered a lot of attention, albeit unwanted and negative attention.

Global Village Duluth Social media issue

Amy’s Baking Company Bakery Boutique & Bistro
Amy’s Bakery is probably our most extreme example of a social media meltdown. After appearing on Gordon Ramsay’s Kitchen the owners took to social media to defend themselves, which quickly turned into a tirade of verbal abuse on commenters escalating until the company claimed its Facebook account had ‘been hacked’ and that they did not post these ‘horrible things’ to people.

J.P. Morgan
The company J.P. Morgan decided to schedule a Q&A sessions where the general public could ask the company questions under the hash tag #AskJPM. Oblivious to how the public viewed their brand they were bombarded with questions such as “When will you all go to jail?”. To say the least J.P. Morgan cancelled the Q&A Session.

Apple’s Iphone 6+ was receiving bad publicity in regards to their Iphones which were being bent whilst in customers pockets. It was during this where LG thought it would get in on the action to brag about it’s own product. This may have worked if the person in charge of LG_France’s tweets didn’t send them via Iphone.

Social media issues

McDonald’s campaign to revamp their ‘Ronald McDonald’ character and asking customers to recount their fond memories. Unfortunately McDonald’s didn’t take into account not everyone is a fan of their company (or clowns) with tweets revealing McDonald’s employees having to pay for their own uniforms to claiming McDonald’s use battery farmed chickens.

Pitbull is a perfect example of how somebody could take a potentially disastrous social media campaign and change it for the better. After releasing a competition where Pitbull would play at a Wallmart anywhere in America with the most likes. Well after the competition was ‘troll-rigged’ the Wallmart with the most likes was in Kodiak, Alaska, a town with a population of 6,423 people. Undeterred Pitbull fulfilled his promise and played for the small town of Kodiak.

When social media backfires

Donald Trump
It’s not just companies who can fall prey to bad social media ideas. In September of 2014 Donald Trump was tricked by a British comedian into retweeting infamous serial killers Fred & Rose West. Sometimes its best to fact check tweets before posting.

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