When Good Social Media Goes Bad

 In Digital

Mark Byrne | Digital Marketing Specialist | Ward Technology Talent | Twitter | LinkedIn

Social media as a full time job is a relatively recent development in terms of marketing and communication jobs. As such, it’s taken some time for it to be taken as seriously as it should.

Companies can forget how much power they are putting in the hands of their community managers. And as we all know, with great power, comes great responsibility. All too often, companies look at social media as an afterthought, as something that the intern can do on their coffee break and not something that they give a whole lot of thought to.

That is until there’s a PR disaster.

Here, I’ve compiled my favourite examples of what happens when good social media goes bad. Everything has been going well, your accounts have been getting increased engagement and then boom, Jimmy the intern has a few afterwork beers and your company is facing a social media disaster. Some examples are honest mistakes, some are poor tactics, some are angry employees – they all show what can happen…

When Good Social Media Goes Bad



Looks like someone forget to sign out of their corporate account at Chrysler. This blooper resulted in Chrysler firing New Media Strategies.




American Red Cross

You’ll be happy to hear that unlike most examples on my list, this one ended well.  Gloria Huang, who was the person ‘#gettngslizzerd’, ended up inadvertently getting donations for the Red Cross thanks her tweet. Dogfish Brewery came on board and asked people to donate to the Red Cross.


The Red Cross’s responded in good nature to the tweet – ‘We’ve deleted the rogue tweet but rest assured the Red Cross is sober and we’ve confiscated the keys’.




Asking for Likes is bad enough but piggy backing on the death of a Bee Gee is worse.




Similar to the example of above, we see that more than one person thought it was a good idea to ‘send condolences’ by asking for Likes.



Marc Jacobs

In one of the more famous cases of an intern having enough, Marc Jacobs learned the hard way what happens when you hand over the reigns of your social media activity to someone who may not be right for the job.


Thanks for reading, if you have any comments, please share them with me on our Ward Tech Talent social media channels.





Recommended Posts

Start typing and press Enter to search

GTA 5, the Second Screen and BeyondBuilding Canada Into A Tech Hub