Using Your Brand to Push A Political Agenda
Something we are getting more and more used to seeing: brands using their power to push the political ideology of owners, presidents or CEOs. Social media is a big player, perhaps the biggest player in this political and commercial game. Brands are using social media as a way to promote the political causes they believe in. If you recall last fall, Chick-Fil-A was a somewhat unwilling pawn in a political/social media/media firestorm over gay marriage. This lead to conservative forces using social media to promote “Chick-Fil-A Day”, a day where customers turned out in record numbers to show their support of the Traditional Marriage beliefs of owner and founder Truett Cathy.
Now, with the Supreme Court hearing cases on gay marriage rights, many other brands have been heard from this week, most notably: Starbucks (a company which has never made any bones about being supporters of gay marriage), and the Martha Stewart brand.
Starbucks CEO went on record this week with a shareholder, telling him that if he didn’t like the company’s stance on gay marriage, he was free to sell his shares and invest in a company that held beliefs closer to his own. Martha Stewart was a little more subtle, posting pics on Facebook and Pinterest of a piece of cake that resembles the red marriage equality symbol.
The big name companies can afford to do this, smaller brands to much lesser extent. Either way, you never know whom you are going to offend. Even though it has become commonplace to use social media to further a cause or political agenda, is it really a good idea? I think most experts would say that unless you can afford to lose some revenue to folks who don’t agree with whatever stance you have taken, keep your politics to yourself. Making enemies and burning bridges over something unrelated to your product is bad business. If you are using social media to promote your business, keep it light, keep it fun, and keep it about YOUR BRAND.
How is Your Social Media Customer Care?
If so, good for you. Apparently an amazing 71% of companies with mobile sites have no mobile customer service plan in place. Social Business News is reporting this week that most companies simply have not yet implemented customer care plans that work on a social media basis.
As our world changes with social media being one of, if not the #1 way we communicate with one another, customer care that can be accessed and administrated through social media needs to be a priority for any business that plans to use social media and mobile sites.
A study done by Execs in the Know called The 2012 Customer Experience Management Benchmark Study details how many companies are being left behind when it comes to social business strategies, and most specifically social business customer care. If you would like to read the report, it can be downloaded, but here are some highlights:
- ultra connectivity has resulted in a shift in expectations
- must reshape and rethink customer care
- only 48% have social media customer care response team in place
- over 50% have only created social media customer care response team in the last 6 months
Ready to get in the game? Reach out to our Web Marketing team, we’ll set you up!