By: Karsyn Scherer
After graduation I plan on becoming a public relations professional. With that goal in mind, I have kept an eye out for questionable behavior by companies and employees. I want to ensure that I am well aware of common mistakes to be positive I do not make the same ones.
I researched tweet fails by companies and found a shocking number of them. Lindex has a list of the fails with screenshots from the days they occurred. From Lindex’s list, the mistake that stood out to me the most was a tweet put out by the New England Patriots. They were celebrating that they were the first team with 1 million followers on Twitter. In order to be personable, they were thanking users that followed them and putting the user’s Twitter handle on a jersey in their graphic. Unfortunately, one user’s name was racist and they posted it without double checking. They had a racist name smeared across a Patriot’s jersey along with their signature! The take away for me is to always double-check my work.
I continued looking at more tweet fails to see how things can be misinterpreted. I checked out Business Insider to see what they had to say on the matter. I came across a tweet that got back lash after being misinterpreted. Entenmanns tweeted out with the hashtag “#notguilty” with a question about eating tasty treats. Unfortunately, they did not check the trending hashtags. That same hashtag was trending for the Casey Anthony trial going on the same day. By failing to do adequate research, they got tons of back lash for being insensitive. From Entenmanns’ mistake, I learned that public relation professionals should always research and check trending hashtags in order to not misrepresent something that your brand does not align with.
By taking a look at company mistakes on social media, I was able to learn from them without having to make the mistakes for myself.
Figure 1Patriot’s Racist Tweet Fail; Credit to Lindex
Figure 2 Entenmanns’ Misinterpreted Tweet; Credit Of Business Insider