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What Not To Do On Social Media

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Do you use social media to promote and grow your business?

Twitter?

Facebook?

YouTube?

Instagram?

Pinterest?

Other social media websites???

Everyone knows what a powerful force social media can be, but many business owners choose not to use it for various reasons, including…

  • It takes too much time
  • It costs too much money
  • It’s too confusing and ever-changing
  • They’re just not sure exactly what to do

And then there’s the big reason why even companies that use social media are very wary of it:

A social media mistake can spread like wildfire and cause tremendous damage.”

If you pay any attention at all, then you hear horror stories based on social media activities by businesses, celebrities and other public figures all too often.

And yesterday was no exception.

Restaurant chain Dave & Busters promoted its “Taco Tuesday” with this ill-conceived tweet:

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Predictably, within just minutes, Twitter blew up with comments, including…

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Predictably, although amazingly slowly, Dave & Busters reacted by deleting the questionable tweet about 40 minutes after it was posted, and they posted the obligatory apology/regret tweet about an hour after that…

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Okay. Now that we’ve all had a few laughs at the expense of Dave & Buster’s, here’s how you can safeguard against a public relations disaster like this ever happening to you or your business (and I have just a bit of experience in this area, having posted over 56,000 tweets to my 34,500+ followers in my 5+ years on Twitter)…

Here are my 5 Keys To Avoiding Social Media Disasters

  1. Get expert guidance yourself, and provide proper training for all of your employees on how to use social media for business
  2. Closely monitor your employees’ social media activities, because others may consider their posts to be representative of you or your business
  3. Have a detailed overall plan and goals for social media, and provide clear rules and guidelines for your team to follow
  4. Use humor and be controversial in order to stand out from the crowd and attract a loyal following, but never post anything that a reasonable person could consider racist, sexist or otherwise completely unacceptable
  5. Whenever you are confronted on social media, take a deep breath before responding, and make sure to re-read your post carefully before you make it go live, strongly considering whether you really want it to become a matter of public record PERMANENTLY.

Yesterday’s fateful tweet by Dave & Buster’s violated my rule #4 above.

Do everything you can to make sure that you DO NOT EVER get in trouble over your use of social media.

It is my sincere wish for you that you experience all the positive power of social media, without any of the considerable danger and disaster than can result if you use it incorrectly.

I’m sure that no one can argue with that.

No. One. (See? Wasn’t that easy?)

2 Responses to What Not To Do On Social Media

  1. Bryan Binkholder Reply

    November 19, 2014 at 9:15 am

    I still like the era of Don Rickles when you could make jokes about everyone and it was just a joke https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K3kJ7VPJnmI Wish people would grow up but since they won’t we have to heed your advice given here!

  2. Scott Reply

    November 19, 2014 at 9:43 am

    …and this is why I’ll never, ever be a social media manager.

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