Social media? For too many brands, it might feel more like anti-social media.
It’s no secret that the rush of consumers and advertisers to Facebook and Twitter has made it ever easier for the masses to be heard—and for brands to mess up.
The minefield of customer commentary has been a part of the conversation since the dawn of social media, and the various high-profile brand blowups over the years have been well-documented.
Considering that so many marketers have learned the hard way that consumers have a voice—and they’re going to use it—one might think that brands would have gotten savvy by now. And yet, a surprising number seem to have still missed the memo: Tread lightly—you’re just a visitor here.
Why is that? Among other things, the social Web is about self-expression, as Copeland points out, a place where users are competing against one another for the pithiest, wittiest—and yes, most incendiary—observations. “You’ve got a lot of wise guys out there who are going to take potshots at you,” he says.