Social Media: Put Fears Aside

UPDATE FROM MOUNTAIN DEW AT THE END OF THIS POST

Starting out on social media can be a scary place for businesses and organizations that have held out until now. When I speak with clients about their fears when it comes to online dialogues I most frequently hear two concerns: lack of resources and knowledge deficiencies.

Organizations that lack resources usually do not understand how they can shape social media to the talent and human capital that they possess. In essence, it is what you make it.

On the other hand, when it comes to knowledge deficiencies, I advise them to learn more, go on test drives, watch what others are doing, and to not be crippled by fear. It can be tough when you are taking quite possibly the first steps towards being transparent online, however, you can’t be afraid to make mistakes, learn from them, and change course.

Moving forward I will point to social media veteran Pepsi and a customer’s their Mountain Dew naming campaign. Everyone can have a bad idea, an off day, or someone else can take your name and run with it, just as long as they learn from the experience and minimize it happening again.

UPDATE: Since posting this entry earlier today Mountain Dew has released the following statement that appeared on TIME’s website:

“Dub the Dew,” a local market promotional campaign that was created by one of our customers – not Mountain Dew – was compromised. We are working diligently with our customer’s team to remove all offensive content that was posted and putting measures in place to ensure this doesn’t happen again.  Mountain Dew has a legacy of engaging its most loyal fans to tap innovative ideas for the brand through really successful programs like “DEWMocracy” and “Your Malt Dew” and so we sincerely apologize to all of our fans who may have been offended by this customer’s program.

Mountain Dew is also reaching out personally on social media to clarify the contest’s origins:

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