It’s a Scary (Social Media) World Out There!

If companies as big as Coca Cola and American Red Cross, who have large social media teams and efforts, can make critical social media mistakes, who says smaller companies and independent marketers can’t?  The truth is, social media is like a circus lion- if not tamed properly, it can lash out and cause great harm.  Social media has been a world of innovation and improvement, but the instant technological access it provides to millions of users has also presented some danger.  Businesses especially need to be wary of this, and they need to be careful that their social media efforts don’t fall into the “wrong hands.”

Coca Cola and American Red Cross both came across the same problem with their Facebook/Twitter accounts- someone with good intentions who had access to the social media utility posted something harmful indirectly about the company, which of course went viral, and it took a while to clean up the damage.  On their social media monitoring platforms, separate team members were able to monitor feedback, and were often given full access.  In the social media world, everyone is watching.  What’s thought to be a innocent post online can turn into something else- everyone has immediate access.  What’s put on the internet has left its permanent footprint, which can be found and commented on by almost anyone.  Another big problem that social media has brought up that wasn’t as much as a worry with traditional communication methods is its instant-ness.  With just the click of a button, something can be immediately posted…and often it cannot be retracted.  Businesses need to be wary of all these potential dangers- once it has a single mishap, businesses will lose current and potential customers.  It only takes one mistake to screw up the relationship with the public, so businesses and marketers need to be careful with social media marketing in order to avoid mishaps.

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