Social Media Gone Wrong

In the past few years, social media has made its way onto the forefront of digital marketing and advertising. Not only is social media a great way to advertise new products and promotions, but it encourages interaction between the organization and consumers. On Twitter, people can see and join in on various conversations through twitter handles and hashtags, but what happens when you tweet something inappropriate out of context?

After NFL star Ray Rice was caught assaulting his wife in an elevator through surveillance cameras, people have started a hashtag to spread awareness for domestic violence. People would use the hashtag #WhyIStayed to show support in one another and share why they stayed in an abusive relationship to encourage other women to defend themselves and leave unhealthy relationships. DiGiorno, a frozen pizza company, tweeted “#WhyIStayed You had pizza,” without understanding the context of the hashtag. With quick negative responses and feedback over Twitter, DiGiorno immediately deleted the inappropriate message and tweeted an apology saying, “A million apologies. Did not read what the hashtag was about before posting” in hopes to relieve the tension online.

In the Adweek article “DiGiornoa Is Really Really Sorry…”, author David Griner acknowledges DiGiorno’s efforts to apologize and comments, “while DiGiorno is sure to take more heat today for a truly dumb tweet, it’s good to see the brand’s social team didn’t just close down the account, smash their phones on the ground and hop on the first plane to the tropics.”

In the past, there have been mistakes similar to the one that DiGiorno has made where organizations have made an inappropriate comment when they do not have a thorough understanding of the context of something. With that said, DiGiorno’s carless mistake did not shock me. Because mistakes like these are unfortunately common, it becomes something on second nature. Although social media is encouraged to be used in fun and witty forms to attract an audience, this serves as a good lesson to be more aware of what you choose to post on the web and that it does not contain an offensive message. In what ways would you try to control the amount of damage that is done to an organization after something that you have released something inappropriate into the media and out in the media?

Sources:
http://www.adweek.com/adfreak/digiorno-really-really-sorry-about-its-tweet-accidentally-making-light-domestic-violence-159998

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3 thoughts on “Social Media Gone Wrong

  1. Yes, DiGiorno did make a big mistake by tweeting, but they also saved themselves by publicly apologizing via twitter. This gives a good warning to all social media users out there, check what a hashtag means before using it!!! Like it said in the blog, this is not the first time someone has misused a hashtag, and not all of them as offensive as this one, but don’t you think people should get it by now?–especially coming from a major company like this frozen pizza.

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  2. I agree with the previous comment in that, I think that at this point if your job is to run the social networking aspect of a company then you should have a good handle on how the different sites run. That being said, DiGiorno did apologize, and it was just one person who made the mistake, probably an intern of some sort., not every employee of the company. I think people should lighten up a bit, we are all human and we all make mistakes. I just can’t help but feel bad for the employee who tweeted that and then received 1,000’s of angry tweets as backlash.

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    • If you didn’t know that there was already a #WhyIStayed for domestic violence awareness, the DiGiorno “#WhyIStayed because you had pizza” is honestly really funny (and true). It’s unfortunate that there can’t be different subcategories of hashtags, so you could do something like: #WhyIStayed and then a little window would pop up and you could tag either “Domestic Violence Awareness” or “Pizza.” Maybe someday..

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