How to Handle Tweet #Fail – US Airways Response

Written April 14th, 2014 by
Categories: crisis communications, social media

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Bad tweets happen to everyone. Including organizations. That’s just the nature of social media. Or human nature for that matter. Unlike with a person-to-person interaction at a bricks and mortar location, social media is very public and for all to see, share, and participate in. Social media is word of mouth with a megaphone.

How an organization responds to a tweet #fail is crucial.

Typical passenger & airline social media conversationWhat started out as a pretty routine exchange between a passenger disgruntled over a delay and the social media customer service team of US Airways. You could insert any airline and it would have been the same. I’m pretty sure most of us who have smart phones with social networking apps on them and travel, have had similar tweets wondering the status of our flights. I know when I’m delayed I jump on Twitter and tweet the airline’s handle. They usually are prompt and we often end up having a conversation about what is going on. All very pleasant in my experience. The volume of tweets they have to manage is huge. So sometimes I hear nothing and that’s no big deal.

Everything pretty standard in the exchange. Then the tone changes with the next response. The person tweeting on the US Airways’ handle responds in a standard way attaching a photo. The photo was far from standard and would be considered pornographic. (Hence I’m not showing the un-cropped version or linking to the photo, that’s what Google is for.)

US Airways responded well to an individual social media customer service representative’s meltdown. What happened was, as one of my former co-worker’s would say, a thinking thought which should have stayed in your head forever, but instead traveled from your brain to your fingers and snuck out for all to see. I’m safe to say we’ve all had those moments professional and unfortunately thinking thoughts slip out becoming talking ones.

What did US Airways do right?

US Airways managed it by:

- Monitoring their feed. They responded within an hour. I’m pretty sure their dashboard was showing a huge uptick in mentions which set off alerts that something was going on.

- Deleting this offensive tweet. It is fine to delete a tweet that is overtly offensive affronting community norms like the photo.

- Apologizing for the offensive tweet. They said they were sorry. Acknowledging the mistake in the proper tone goes a long way toward restoring faith in the brand. The response on Twitter towards US Airways has been positive.

Sure they’ve taken a temporary ding to their reputation and lots of folks are having a laugh at their expense, but in the long run something like this isn’t going to affect them. People are still going to fly US Airways unless their planes start falling out of the sky on a regular basis or their prices triple. End of this story.

Social Media Crisis Communications: Preparing for, Preventing, and Surviving a Public Relations #FailThe Book

Social Media Crisis Communications: Preparing for, Preventing, and Surviving a Public Relations #Fail is now available in eBook format. Buy it now!

TIME CRUNCH? Are you putting your crisis communications plan together and need help? Or are currently dealing with a crisis and need crisis communications assistance?

Get help NOW. Contact Ann Marie at ann@mindthegappr.com or +1 302.563.0992 today.

Monday Ann-Sense: Heartbleed Bug

Written April 13th, 2014 by
Categories: Monday Morning Ann-Sense, social media

Heartbleed BugWhat a week of confusion and concern about the Heartbleed Bug lurking on the Internet! While I’m very tech savvy, I’m confused about this bug and what networks were affected. I’m in the same boat as most everyone else. Media outlets are reporting that this could be the biggest security threat the Internet or more like our Internet safety has seen to date. And what is scary is this threat has been active for two years or so.

Change your passwords too quickly before the site has done their patches and it will be negated. Not change your passwords and well… who knows. Information from websites and platforms hasn’t been forthcoming making it frustrating.

That’s the thing about hacking and bugs, it is a bit of the Wild West out there. With the bad guys being more devious and the good guys trying to keep up with them then stopping them. Motivations for hacking could be just the thrill of know you can do it or for laughs. Or in this case a more sinister motivations to get access to valuable information.

It has been widely reported that Facebook, Tumblr, Google, and Yahoo have been affected by HeartBleed. And that they have patched the flaw. The online tech publication, Mashable, has shared a good list of the most popular sites and if they have been hit by the bug. It is safe to say that you should be changing your passwords now.

So what can you do?

Security Features. Once you change your passwords, then enable all security features such as 2-Step verification for Facebook, Google, etc. Remember to change your passwords with every change of season and don’t have the same password for all of your accounts.

Detection Tools. There are some tools you can use to show that a website you are on may be affected by Heartbleed Bug. One tool is an Chrome App called, Chromebleed. I’ve tested it out and it seems to work.

Monitor News. While Mashable did share a good list, that list may expand so be paying attention the tech publications as well as mainstream media.

I’ve a feeling there will be more information presenting itself in regards to this massive security flaw. And many more websites will be coming forward. Be on alert.

 

Social Media Crisis Communications: Preparing for, Preventing, and Surviving a Public Relations #FailThe Book

Social Media Crisis Communications: Preparing for, Preventing, and Surviving a Public Relations #Fail is now available in eBook format. Buy it now!

TIME CRUNCH? Are you putting your crisis communications plan together and need help? Or are currently dealing with a crisis and need crisis communications assistance?

Get help NOW. Contact Ann Marie at ann@mindthegappr.com or +1 302.563.0992 today.

Social Media Reputation Management – Honey Maid

Written April 9th, 2014 by
Categories: social media

Social Media Reputation Management - Honey Maid

Honey Maid released an ad touting their new campaign #thisiswholesome in mid-March 2014 showing the diversity of American families. Honey Maid joined other brands such as Cheerios and Chevrolet in doing so. And having to manage social media backlash.

In a November 25, 2013 New York Times article, it was pointed out that, “Families are more ethnically, racially, religiously and stylistically diverse than half a generation ago — than even half a year ago.”  These brands are reflecting the changing face of American families. Families which no longer resemble the ideal put forth in Norman Rockwell’s Thanksgiving painting.

These inclusive ads showing bi-racial, same-sex, tattooed, and military parents with their children have caused negative feedback on social media from vocal minorities. One group is calling for a letter writing campaign against graham cracker maker. Instead of retreating and apologizing, Honey Maid has stood by their inclusive commercial. And they created a response to those critical of their #thisiswholesome ad:

 

Why was their response so good? And how it can help your organization.

It is OK for brands not fall over themselves caving to the critics. Honey Maid isn’t taking sides in the culture wars like some are implying. What Honey Maid did right:

Know your customer. In that ad, Honey Maid is speaking to their consumers. The ad reflects the make-up of families today. The people who buy Honey Maid as snacks for their kid’s lunch boxes and for S’Mores around the campfire.

Listening to Online Conversations. Honey Maid was monitoring their online presence. A great response begins with great listening. You need to be monitoring the online space for conversations about your organization and your industry. There are platforms which help you do that free or at affordable costs.

Mindful of tone when responding. Honey Maid was creative and sincere with their response to critics. How you respond is important. Never respond in a dismissive or impolite manner, or you will only add fuel to the fire. Don’t allow yourself to give knee-jerk responses.

While you can’t be loved by everyone all of the time, you can control how you respond to the situation. Often gaining more supporters and customers. S’more anyone?

Social Media Crisis Communications: Preparing for, Preventing, and Surviving a Public Relations #FailThe Book

Social Media Crisis Communications: Preparing for, Preventing, and Surviving a Public Relations #Fail is now available in eBook format. Buy it now!

TIME CRUNCH? Are you putting your crisis communications plan together and need help? Or are currently dealing with a crisis and need crisis communications assistance?

Get help NOW. Contact Ann Marie at ann@mindthegappr.com or +1 302.563.0992 today.

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