Posts Tagged ‘Major Fail’

I have actually been sitting on this blog post for quite some time as I have been very busy with work but figured I would finally share with the world my thoughts on Spam/advertising, especially how it pertains to Social Media, as well as a little run in I had a few months back that inspired this post.

It all with a Tweet that read, “Check out our company on Facebook (with the link) for your Social Media needs.” Never before had I contacted this company nor had they tried to follow me or engage in any conversation I had been in. Naturally I decided to check out their stream and sure enough there were many other Tweets with the same wording. Having been on twitter for a while and suffered through this kind of spam, I will admit that I was more than a little frustrated. I shot a tweet back asking if spamming Twitter was successful for them and left it at that. They responded! Imagine that, an actual person behind the spam! Actually they were not pleased with the term “spam” that I used and said they would not answer the question. After an exchange of tweets of the next couple days (including the owner saying that sending out mass tweets unsolicited without consent was not spam) I did get out of him that it apparently had led to a little business.

After this altercation I began to wonder, is the minimal amount of time spamming the internet worth the 1-2% return (typical direct mail return)? Is there a better way to interact online for a brand that is not well known/service that is not constantly needed? It all goes back to what any number of social media experts stress, engaging the audience and monitoring the channels. My best example on monitoring comes from work I do with the credit union I work at. I have my Google Alerts set up for many different keywords and I check them at least once a day. One morning I came across someone asking about a product we offer. Sent him a tweet and we received a call a little while later form his friend. Unfortunately we were unable to help this specific person but we were there. It was a lead and all it took was a tweet.

I will admit that I am no expert. I love social media and am constantly learning and trying new things. In a field this young, there are few experts to speak of. Learn the best practices and apply them. Engage your followers and make following you worth their while. If you do this you will have a better chance at succeeding than using spam tactics for your online advertising. Stay away from Spam-vertising or you will likely be blocked from the very people you are trying to help. If I am going to hire a firm, I want to know that they are knowledgeable and understand what they are talking about, not one that is on social media only for themselves.

I have checked the company’s stream recently and there is no more spam. Unfortunately there are many posts from Twitterfeed, but that is a rant for another day.

What is your definition of spam?

I wanna be like Mike.

Posted: December 10, 2009 in Uncategorized
Tags: , ,

So as you may have heard by now, Michael Jordan (the ungrateful basketball star of yesteryear) did not show up for a half-time show for an NBA development league game in Orem, Utah for a charity shoot-out that he never even agreed to. The nerve of some people. Ok maybe you have not heard of this latest marketing blunder made by the owner of the Utah Flash… and you have probably never even heard of the Flash…. or for that matter the NBA development league but I will will allow you to mosey on over to KSL.com’s news report on the incident and then come on back to hear my take on the whole ordeal. Go on…. I will wait.


Welcome back. So as you now know Brandt Andersen, the owner of the Utah Flash, decided it would be a good idea to try and get Mr. Basketball, Michael Jordan, to come to his game to bring in a crowd. The only problem…. MJ did not agree to anything while Mr Andersen slyly promoted the event as a possibility. That is kind of the gist of the article. Brandt did try to apologize via his blog but that did not go over too well.  At least he tried.


Ok here goes the “real” meat of the blog. Was this a good idea for Brandt and the Flash? In theory yes. Was it carried out well…. obviously no. Brandt did try to cover himself with his statement, “Michael Jordan will be here, and if he’s not, we promise to make it entertaining.” Now if it would have been left at that the whole situation would have been avoided…. for the most part. The problem comes with the organizations desire (read Brandt’s desire) to experiment with Social Media Marketing. In the right hands Social Media Marketing can lead to great growth and loyalty among your customers and potential customers. In the wrong hands it can cut you in two. Whoever said bad press is good press lied. Would you like to go to an event that continually lied about what was going on or a restaurant that continually received poor health code ratings? No. Hence no press can be better press then bad press. You want people to come back and purchase again, right? 


So to go back. This “experiment” as he put it entailed taping the MJ look-a-like in various spots around the city. That would have been great if there was a possibility of His Airness actually showing up but by creating the “viral” wave, as he put it, and not having a disclaimer, Brandt stepped over the ethical line. Was it technically illegal? Probably not. Was it a good idea? Far from it. Now the Flash will have to overcome the bad PR blitz that has already come their way. Can they recover? Yes. Will it be easy? Of course not, nor should it be! Social media is not the only answer but it is a great option. Maybe he should still try to donate the $100,000 to a very deserving charity to help make up for the lost goodwill. 


Brandt, reach out to your community. They are the only ones you can rely on… they just need to know they can rely on you. Show them that you care beyond the refunds and free tickets. Run social media contests on Facebook, Twitter, Foursquare and Loopt. You need them more then they need you. Good luck and you can overcome this. Just try harder.