How to Recover from a Social Media PR Disaster- SLP2 Mistakes are not limited to media or social media for that matter. A great soul remarked “Only some of us can learn by others’ mistakes. The rest of us have to be the other people”. Zachary Sniderman has made worthy points in his write up about Social Media mistakes…
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‘There are also slips that can do serious damage to your brand. Of these, there are largely five main types: The inappropriate opinion, the insensitive statement, the early release, the false reward and the hack’1. While the inappropriate opinion is somewhat debatable in this version, others seem more agreeable to me. To elaborate on the inappropriate opinion according to the example offered – the Secret Service recently tweeted out: “Had to monitor Fox for a story. Can’t. Deal. With. The. Blathering.” This more sounds like a forced out confession unable of being withheld anymore in its source, like the way the lava gushes out after reaching its threshold in a volcano. It is interpreted as inappropriate only because it is degrading to the company. The visible truth in it from the commenter’s point of view cannot be disregarded. Sounds like someone was clearing their mind in a trance! The insensitive statement, the early release, false reward and hack seem to be appropriate slips, more like genuine mistakes. Insensitivity in a statement holds relative value. It means what was insensitive to one may not be insensitive to another. While I agree with the example quoted in the write up, another example fits the bill ere. Burger King once placed the photograph of Goddess Lakshmi (the deity of wealth and prosperity in Indian culture) on top of a hamburger in their ad to appeal to the Indian Diaspora in Spain. The Indian community was infuriated as it is considered inexplicably offensive in Indian culture. The company not only withdrew the ad immediately, but quickly released an official apology and said they were only trying to connect to the Indians there and never meant to hurt their feelings or culture. Insensitive statements can be prevented by learning well about the required subject matter. Early release works in relation to time of activity concerned. This is a tricky affair and even the best in business can stumble on it at times. It is more like hitting the ball one-hundredth of a second before the ball reaches you in lawn tennis. You still miss it or hit it wrong. Either way, one’s scoring is hurt. The false reward accounts for overlooking the smallest or simplest of details. Careful proof-reading of documents and any other important detail will reduce the chances of its occurrence. A sales representative once sent a quotation of goods with one zero missing in the price column. Mighty mistake as it may seem, a quotation being a document, the customer quickly accepted the faulty one as its price was quoted ten times less. On receiving the order and realizing the mistake, the representative was soaked in sweat and panicked for a solution. She had to personally visit the client and persuade him to see the logical error and apologize to save any loss to her reputation or the company and still ensure the customer is retained. She did all this. But it took a lot of courage and effort spread over three hours in conversation. If you look at ‘hack’, it is more of external interference into your life intending to cause trouble. As much as you receive attention for your goodwill, does it actually amount to a failure on your part remains a subjective question, varying from case to case. All the above discussed disasters and many more that can happen speak about how human mind cannot surpass its own thinking. What was music to one is frowned upon by another as noise! That
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