There is hardly a way you could stay away from branding your business on social media, which is the need of the hour. If you would not take advantage of it, someone else in competition will. While if you already have been using social media to brand your business, there are chances the results could turn to positive or negative ways. It all depends on how you project your brand and your company’s culture on these networks. Remember…the customer sees it all and takes his/her own decisions to stay with your brand (the good), to stay away from it (the bad), or to stay against it (the ugly)!
You attitude toward your customers is the key to getting a certain attitude back from them. If your company’s image is projected as caring for clients, they too might turn the tables to make your brand reach the top. But, if there is even a single annoying incident that happens with any customer, you might not be able to save your brand image on social media. This seems to be unreal, but the real case studies of some brands could prove it to you.
Check out the case of United Airlines whose baggage-handling unit broke a customer’s guitar while offloading. This customer was the Canadian singer, Dave Caroll who got so heartbroken to have seen his guitar broken that he created a song on the incident (“United Breaks Guitar”). When all his reimbursement requests were unheeded, he went on to upload this song video on YouTube. His video went viral with around 13 million views and this received so much bad publicity for the United Airlines that it ultimately had to apologize and reimburse to this customer of theirs.
Things can go ugly in some cases where the company employees and customers together spread a bad word about the brand, and this happens when the company pays attention to neither customer service nor their employees. Nevertheless, this can be avoided by leveraging the social media in the best possible manner. Social media does all good when you proactively make use of it by doing appropriate posting, tweeting and blogging (together called tri-branding efforts). You brand can get virally successful if you are posting recent and useful company information, share constant updates on new services and products, link your employment to brand promotion through posting opportunities, and provide timely press releases through social media networks. The rest is done by customers who promote your brand on their own once they get connected to it.