Twitter is such an effective tool for businesses to utilize in their digital marketing schemes. It contributes to the success of the company by making consumers more aware of a brand. It can be a tool for great customer service and improving the relationship between a company and a consumer. Twitter can also provide up-to-date information on the company’s day-to-day activities. With all the positives Twitter can bring, if used inappropriately it can cause a lot of damage. Here are two recent Twitter controversies briefly explained to show you what to avoid when using Twitter to promote your company’s brand.
Although the NYPD isn’t your traditional organization using Twitter to increase awareness of their brand, it can still benefit from the use of this social media platform. It can also suffer from the negatives of a poor Twitter campaign. On Tuesday April 22 the NYPD sent out a tweet asking their followers to tweet pictures of themselves with the NYPD using the hashtag #myNYPD. The campaign backfired, badly.
A numerous amount of photos were tweeted showing the NYPD using force to apprehend people. This was a negative representation of the NYPD because many of the photos appeared to be showing police brutality. We do not know for sure whether the force was justified but it gave the NYPD the wrong kind of publicity they were hoping to get. When developing Twitter campaigns and using hashtags every company should think through the possible negatives that would occur and decide if the campaign is even worth it. In the case of the NYPD it’s clear that they would’ve been better off not starting this campaign at all.
US Airways may have had one of the worse Twitter scandals of all time. Airlines using Twitter constantly receive negative feedback due to delays or bad experiences at the airport. US Airways was in the middle of responding to a customer who was upset about a delay and poor customer service when something unimaginable happened. US Airways responded to the tweet asking the upset customer to fill out a complaint form. Attached to the tweet was an inappropriate and explicit picture instead of the complaint form.
US Airways has since responded and explained that the photo was sent to them earlier and they accidentally included it in the response tweet. They are investigating the situation to find out exactly how it transpired. If this is truly how it happened then this brings up the fact that double checking your tweets before sending them can absolutely help your company avoid disaster. Keep a close eye on your Twitter account and make sure the tweets you send out are an astute representation of your company’s brand.