5 Social Media Fails to Learn From

Micaela Wright | @caelawright12 In the wake of the now infamous US Airways tweet, we were left wondering what we can learn from the increasing number of “social media fails." Mistakes are bound to happen in business, but in this digital age, you lend your business to a huge number of people seeing it instantaneously and the backlash that follows spreads fast. Here are 5 social media fails and what we can learn from.

5. K-Mart - The automated response fail.

When K-Mart received backlash for opening earlier than ever on Thanksgiving, someone at their social media team sent 100+ responses. Automated tweets are never a good idea; poorly written automated tweets are even worse.

kmart fail

4. Kenneth Cole - The world politics fail.

This should go without saying, but never use a world tragedy or war to promote your products. Turns out people don’t react positively to companies using the death of thousands in Egypt to promote a new clothes line.


3. American Rifleman (NRA) - The scheduled post/bad timing fail.

When a national tragedy like the Aurora shootings happen, a manager’s first thought might not be to check their scheduled postings for the day. This case is probably just bad timing, but someone should be checking the news to make sure a bad tweet like this is never sent.


2. KitchenAid - The personal tweet fail.

It is never a good idea to get political on business social media accounts. It’s an even worse idea when the grammar is bad. KitchenAid sent out this tweet during the 2012 election. The company promptly removed the tweet and explained that a member of its social media team had posted it from the company’s page instead of their personal page on accident. It is important to remember to switch back to personal accounts when you leave work.


1. Amy’s Baking Co. - The 'defending your honor' fail.

At Amy’s Baking Co., two owners went on a Facebook rampage when they received negative feedback following their appearance on Kitchen Nightmares, where they were dumped by Gordon Ramsey for being too difficult to work with. They took to Facebook to defend their honor, riddled with too much capitalization, misspellings, and name calling. Retaliation is never a good idea, especially on the Internet where it could go viral.



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