Brands have become increasingly notorious for trying to tie their content calendars in with national/international events and holidays.
On the Positive Side of This Topic …
We’ve also had the pleasure of witnessing inspiring uses of creativity and timeliness, like Oreo’s well-placed Tweet during Super Bowl XLVII about the power out.
On a Negative Note, however …
Brands have often destroyed their own online reputations by impulsively interjecting their voices into conversations. I say impulsively because so often it is done without any real thought.
Just this Monday, we witnessed DiGiorno exploit a Hashtag about domestic violence.
Why I’m Talking About This
And I know, I know, I know. A lot of people are sick of us marketing and public relations professionals bastardizing brands who make mistakes.
But guess what? I can sit here and list dozens upon dozens more examples of egregious sins made by world-leading brands in the digital realm. Yet, no matter how many case studies we have to study, I can sit here referencing easy to avoid mistakes as recent as Monday.
Why You Should Consider Social Media Silence Tomorrow
Tomorrow is September 11. Tomorrow is a solemn day of remembrance and should be treated as such.
I can already guarantee you that brands and organizations will post something about it tomorrow. I can also promise you that several won’t do it properly and will end up with a social media firestorm on their hands. And sadly, I can lastly tell you that a lot of social media managers on behalf of United States brands forgot what tomorrow is while they were scheduling content.
Yes, we’re in the habit of tying in with larger events and themes. As a marketing and public relations professional, I understand why. You want to help your brand cut through the noise by aligning yourself with something bigger than yourself.
The anniversary of September 11 is not the day to do that
Tomorrow is not the day to interject your brand into the conversation. Some of you may have good intentions for doing so, but others may do it simply because you’re in the habit of tying into every conversation larger than your brand to gain exposure.
Honestly, sometimes it’s hard to tell what your intentions are
You might have good intentions, but your content may offend your audience. You might have thought your content was designed in good taste, but it might not be received that way. AT&T made this mistake last year and the kickback was significant–significant enough that some people considered switching service providers.
Is it so crazy to take a day off from posting? You can pick up where you left off on Friday, I promise.
I think keeping your brand’s digital voice silent tomorrow will accomplish three main things.
- It will protect you, and your reputation, from any possible misinterpretations of your content
- It will demonstrate that you don’t feel the need to jump into any conversation
- But most importantly, it will show a solemn respect and reverence for what happened on September 11
“September 11, while it happened 13 years ago now, is still fresh in people’s minds,” says Jason Mollica, president of JRM Comm. “The images of the planes crashing into the towers and the eventual collapse is a raw, open wound for many. If you are like me, you know someone who was there during the attacks. By going silent on social media for one day will not destroy your brand or your image. Frankly, it’s important to remember the sacrifice, the heroes, and the those that didn’t come home. I’m going silent on 9/11. I hope people and brands will do the same.”
Talk to you on Friday,