Mistake 1: DiGiorno’s #WhyIStayed Tweet
Remember the Ray Rice incident with his girlfriend at the time Janay Palmer? Whenthis video surfaced it brought domestic violence to the forefront of media attention. Women who had been involved in domestic violence took to Twitter to share their stories using the hashtag #WhyIStayed. DiGiorno’s big mistake was to jump on the hashtag. They tweeted: #WhyIStayed You had pizza. This, rightfully so, offended thousands of women who have been through abuse. To their credit, DiGiorno owned up to the mistake and responded to offended parties individually.
Dealing with thanking the 1 million fans who followed them and helped them be the first NFL team to reach 1 million followers would be a daunting task to say the least. So, the Patriots set up an automated response that sent out a thank you tweet with an image of the Twitter handle on the back of a jersey and the hashtag #1MillionPatriots, which got them in trouble when one of the Twitter handles was racist. Understandably this offended several people and brought negative attention to a team already dealing with enough, anyone remember Aaron Hernandez?
Mistake 3: Are there giraffes in Ghana? No!
Back in 2014 all anyone was talking about was the World Cup. So media savvy companies were working hard to capitalize on this buzz. This is what Delta was doing when they sent out a tweet that got quite a bit of attention anyway. They sent out a tweet with the final score of the USA vs Ghana which included a photo of the Statue of Liberty with the USA’s score… and a giraffe with Ghana’s score. This got plenty of attention, but not the kind Delta was hoping for.
American Apparel posted a photo to their Tumblr account as an example of fireworks on the 4th of July, 2014 with the hashtags #clouds and #smoke. This photo looks very cool, especially if you don’t know what it is. For anyone who is aware of what is actually happening in the photo, their festive post is offensive and shocking. It isn’t fireworks, it is the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster that killed seven people in 1986. They did issue an apology, and blamed it on international social media employees, but let’s hope they learned to do a little more than a Google search when looking for images. Knowing what is actually going on is vital.
Mistake 5: Don’t make fun of dead Grandmothers
KitchenAid is a well known and respected kitchen appliance company. It is not a political force and should probably stick to what they know best. Back during the 2012 presidential debates they sent out a tweet that got quite a bit of attention. President Barack Obama’s grandmother died three days before he won the presidency in 2008 and he mentioned her in 2012 during one of the debates. The tweet that they sent implied rather obnoxiously that she died at that time because she knew how bad his presidency would be. KitchenAid posted an apology directly to the president and blamed the mishap on an employee accidentally posting on the company’s Twitter feed instead of their personal one.