Examples of Social Media Gone Wrong

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Social media is a fantastic tool to get your product, idea or message known. Nowadays, literally everyone is on Facebook, Twitter or Instagram and, what's more, they spend hours on these social media platforms. They are the perfect environments to get your business and product known, interact with your customers, attract new followers and establish a powerful brand, either by yourself or through a social media influencer platform. like NeoReach.

Social media can be an extremely powerful tool if you know how to use it, but it can also be incredibly dangerous for your business, especially if used carelessly. The competition on social media platforms is fierce and having a well-crafted strategy is essential for its success. On the contrary, poorly planned strategies can miss their target and, even worse, may be extremely detrimental for your business.

There are lot of examples of social media strategies gone wrong, but here are the most incredible ones:
  1. Twitter's CEO makes a blooper
It's one thing when a social media newbie makes a mistake in a campaign, but it's a completely different story when the CEO of an international multi-billion company does it. In 2014, Twitter's boss, Anthony Noto, made a terrible mistake when he posted a private message on his public account. It read “I still think we should buy them. He is on your schedule for Dec 15 or 16 -- we will need to sell him. I have a plan.” The message is thought to be about the possible acquisition of Shots, an app backed by Justin Bieber. The message was initially intended to go to Twitter's CFO but instead was made public to Anthony Noto's thousands of followers.
  1. NSFW message from US Airways
Social media is often used by big companies to talk directly to their customers or even to offer support. While this usually goes without trouble, there are some cases which can easily be defined as complete communication disasters. This is the case with one of US Airways tweets to one of its customers. The message was directed at a customer who complained about the company's service and included an incredibly inappropriate image. NSFW is really just an understatement for that particular picture, as many of  the users who have seen it said, but thankfully, the company deleted the message in less than an hour and issued a formal apology.
  1. Global Village's special offer for Martin Luther King's Day
Almost all companies try to have special sales on national holidays and commemorations, but when these sale promotions are offensive, everyone has to suffer. The manager at Global Village's Duluth, Minnesota, store tried to create a special sales day on MLK Day, but the message was condemned as being racist. The message on the store's Facebook page read “25 percent off everything black”, but was immediately taken down after customers complained about its offensive connotations. Fortunately for the customers, the offer still went on, but under a different slogan.
  1. Challenger's disaster causes a social media disaster
American Apparel found a very inappropriate way to celebrate 4th of July and annoy its customers in the process. The company's Tumblr page featured a picture of the Challenger space shuttle exploding as a way to celebrate the 4th of July. This absurd marketing campaign initially baffled clients, but later attracted a lot of negative feedback. The company deleted the image and apologized after several hours, but the damage was done. In a later statement, American Apparel's CEO explained that their social media manager was born after the terrible incident and didn't know what the picture was all about. A frivolous explanation, but at least they apologized.

About the Author:

Flaviu Mircea is a small business owner who has used social media as a marketing tool for his company. If you would like to learn more about Flaviu, you can check out his Google+ profile.

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