Should Your Brand Jump on the Buzz?
Adweek released an article about the buzziest topics on Facebook for the month of November. The Paris terror attacks, Black Friday, Thanksgiving, Cyber Monday, Christmas and Rhonda Rousey were among the top hitters for buzzword chatter. When you consider how many Facebook users there are, and how many of them are business pages representing a brand, that’s a helluva lot of Facebook users making public outcries for Paris and sharing their door-buster sales hunts for Black Friday.
Remember when you were a kid in school and you’d try to butt into a conversation between two cool kids and they’d say, “This is an A-B conversation, C your way out?” Well, I can’t help but think that not all brands have a place inserting themselves into the buzz on social media just for the sake of riding the wave. Sure, with the likes of Black Friday, any brand that sells anything can (and probably should) join in on Black Friday buzz. Any online retailer shouldn’t snooze through #CyberMonday. But when it comes to tragedy, such as the Paris attacks, is it an opportunity for a brand to show genuine support? Or, is the brand simply joining in on the buzz to get their name out there? Well, what is it?
As a social media director, I suggest going quiet on headlines, unless that headline directly affects your brand. To apply this to individuals, consider how Facebook added the translucent French flag as a filter you could put on your profile picture to show your support for Paris. Does changing your profile picture actually do anything for anyone? No. Does your brand sending out tweets using #JeSuisParis help anyone? It could, maybe, but only under certain circumstances. For example, a guitar brand that was used by the band performing in Paris during the attacks has a direct tie to the event. If they so chose to join in on the buzz, they’d be acknowledging the event, showing support, and aligning their brand as a part of a global community that cares about its consumers.
So, when it comes to the buzz on social media, trending topics on Twitter included, sure, join in on the fun. But when it comes to the tragic stuff, make sure you’re actually part of that A-B conversation, because your followers may C right through you.