Social media is woven into the fabric of our lives and for now it seems there’s no getting around it. Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. Vine. Whatever else is popping out there or on the bubble. Get on it, get hip, or get left. Companies and brands recognize that this is more than a trend, it’s a way of life; and they have done the most to make their social media presence known. Sometimes it succeeds and sometimes it fails. Yesterday was an epic failure for DiGiorno Pizza.
When TMZ released the entire video of former Baltimore Ravens player Ray Rice knocking his wife, Janay Rice, out cold, there was of course the social media reaction. Many people took to Twitter to express their support for Janay and to address those whose retort was – well she stayed. So what’s the big deal? This then prompted a #WhyIStayed hashtag where victims of domestic violence bravely shared the reasons behind why they didn’t immediately leave their abuser.
DiGiorno Pizza tried to get on the action and got it all wrong.
— Jay Scott Smith (@JayScottSmith) September 9, 2014
No. Just no. Of course they then had to retract and backpedal, but by then the tweet had been put out in the Twitter atmosphere and seen by the masses.
Of course the original tweet was deleted and then came the usual apology tweet:
A million apologies. Did not read what the hashtag was about before posting.
— DiGiorno Pizza (@DiGiornoPizza) September 9, 2014
Too little, too late. It would have taken less than 30 seconds for the social media manager (or intern) to click on the hashtag and get an idea of what was happening. But they wanted to capitalize on a trending topic and then had to do their own PR cleanup and apologize for the mistake.
The lesson for companies or anyone trying to build a brand? Look before you tweet.
Diana Veiga is a Spelman woman, a DC resident, and a freelance writer who loves cute shoes and sparkly things. Follow her on Twitter: @dianaveiga