News and views on what matters to me: mindfulness, leadership, public relations, marketing, social media, pop culture and every now and then I will surprise you with something else.
It has been refreshing taking a mini social media vacation. In full disclosure, I couldn’t fully stay away from Twitter, but it was limited to my credit. I posted earlier that it would be an interesting strategy to go silent for Thanksgiving and actually promote family time, something brands seem to have zero interest in. As a matter of fact, they’re doing the opposite with some opening on Thanksgiving Day and sending a slew of promotional e-mails to capitalize on the latest deal. When I woke up on Thanksgiving, I already had at least 50 junk emails telling me about a deal I just couldn’t pass up and they kept on rolling right through the weekend into Cyber Monday.
The airways of social media were anything but silent too, as I looked back on the activities of some of my favorite brands. It is during times like these where social media actually has an ugly side; we get to see humanity at its best, aka, another fight that broke out in a Wal-Mart, except this time it’s viral and we’re spending our time talking about the worst qualities coming out of people during the holidays of all times! I think I agree with a Wal-Mart spokesperson that mentioned a few tweets and videos are not representative of the whole experience. I am not one to defend Wal-Mart by any means, but using this medium to share awful things like that isn’t the right way either.
I am a huge proponent of social media because of its magnificent capability, but not when it’s perpetuating a negative storyline and giving more power to bad habits such as our sometimes poor manners during the holiday season. In the spirit of real-time marketing, brands should be involved in the holiday conversation, however, this is a conversation that should be happening offline and brands should find creative ways to do the right thing and not be hyper involved during this holiday season. I am looking forward to seeing some tasteful social media activity over this holiday season…it’s no easy feat, but it can be done.