To Post? Or Not to Post? That is the Question

Whenever you log on to your Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat or Facebook and you just can’t seem to shake those ever present, ugly and just wrong social media posts? If so, then great, you’re taking initiative to know what to post and what not to post on social media.

In the field of communications and specifically in public relations, social media is quickly becoming a “love-hate” platform. It’s amazing for brand communication, for marketing and for quickly covering a large audience in a small amount of time. However, when it comes to crises, bad grammar and miscommunication on a post, no matter how hard you scrub, never completely goes away. Let’s take a look at a few examples from social media posts by some prominent figures you may know (and others you may not) to determine what was done right and what was done wrong.

Photo courtesy of thumb.mic.com

Up first, Razer, a software and hardware designing company for gamers worldwide. Last year, when the MacBook Pro was released, Razer decided to tweet about the non-existent SD slot on the new Apple product by saying, “You call yourself Pro? S my D.” Just taking it at face value, this was not a good post. They later deleted the tweet but the innuendo here is REALLY, REALLY bad and you have to wonder where their PR person was the moment this was decided to be tweeted.

DO NOT POST sexual innuendos on social media. It can affect your brand negatively and also cause your audience to feel uncomfortable and offended.

Photo courtesy of twitter.com

Next we have, Jimmy John’s, a sandwich chain that took to Twitter last year and tweeted, “You vs. the guy she tells you not to worry about.” This was an EPIC tweet. Around this time, there were plenty of memes going around about the differences between you, the current guy she’s dating and him, the guy you don’t have to worry about (who happens to “look” better than you.)

DO POST relevant content that refer back to what the internet is talking about at that moment. It acts as good publicity for your company and reminds the audience that there is still a human behind the scenes who pays attention.

Photo courtesy of twitter.com

Now, check out this tweet by the US Dept. of Education: “Education must not simply teach work – it must teach life. – W.E.B. DeBois”. Great quote by the late civil rights activist and co-founder of the NAACP. However, his name is spelled incorrectly. They later apologized and in their apology they misspelled “apology”.

DO NOT POST content without proof reading or fact checking. This means you should always make sure quotes are accurate and spelling of names, words and places are always correct. Rule of thumb: if you are not sure, look it up.

Photo courtesy of twitter.com

Finally, we have Bleacher Report, a sports news website that gives stats, news, scores and game updates on all things sports related. In this post, there is a gif of Kyrie Irving sitting on the bench in the NBA Finals. Bleacher Report says: “This game. Wow. #NBAFinals.” Nothing wrong here, just an account doing its job, keeping its brand consistent and updating its audience timely and with a little fun.

 

DO POST information that is relevant to your brand, and always stay consistent. If your account is one that uses memes and gifs for their content, then post that. If your brand is one that sticks to traditional tweeting, then stick with that. Just stay true to your brand and you will never go wrong.

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Gabrielle Lemmon is a senior studying communications with a concentration in public relations at Bowie State University in Bowie, Maryland. She serves as the 2017-2018 president for the Bowie State University PRSSA Chapter ,as well as the marketing director for the senior class executive board. Currently, Gabrielle is interning with CarVer Communications — a boutique communications firm in the Washington, DC and Mid-Atlantic area.

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