#FanFactor Friday – Avoid Tweet Faux PasMay 4, 2012
Tweeting is a great way to keep your fans informed about what is going on at your company. Twitter is also a perfect platform for engaging your fans in conversations about your brand, products, and services. However, sometimes a tweet can cost your company big bucks, as Panther Racing owner John Barnes found out. His tweet, “Today is the day to resolve TURBOGATE! I hope (at)indcar gets their act together. It has been embarrassing,” cost him $25,000. IndyCar fined Barnes $25,000 and placed him on probation until Dec. 31 for using “improper or disparaging language in reference to IndyCar,” according to USA Today. Here are 3 tips for avoiding costly tweet faux pas on your social media networks.
1. Remember that social media networks are social. Tweets, updates, Facebook posts, likes, etc. are public unless you set your privacy preferences to block posts from being seen by the general public. This means anyone can read your posts, tweets, etc. not just your fans. Social networks are a great place to promote your company and engage with fans. They are not a private platform to voice grievances. If you wouldn’t want your boss, co-workers, associates, mom, etc. to read what you are posting, then don’t post it.
2. Keep your posts, updates and tweets brand appropriate. Use engaging, positive language to draw in your fans. Avoid complaining, whining, or attacking your competitors or other brands. Use discretion and the golden rule when posting on your social networks. If you want someone to say nice things about you and your brand, then say nice things about others. Your social networks should be a positive place where fans can engage with you and your company without feeling like they will be attacked or belittled for their opinions.
3. Content reigns supreme. Your fans are interested in the content posted on your social networks. Unless you are Lady Gaga, your fans are not interested in your personal opinions. Posting engaging content that sparks conversation among your fans will ultimately increase your fan base. Interesting content usually increases your chance for re-tweets, likes, +1s, etc.
Have other tips for avoiding embarrassing social media faux pas? Share them with me in the comments below or on Facebook!