A sponsored Twitter campaign from McDonald’s took a wrong turn last week when the #McDStories hashtag was seized upon by non-fans of the chain.
According to Business Insider, the promoted tweet: “When u make something w/ pride, people can taste it,” McD potato supplier #McDstories,” was pulled after less than two hours. In the meantime, the hashtag was used for a litany of complaints about McDonald’s food, service quality and business practices.
This is a good reminder for brands that social media should be a window into your brand’s soul, not a contrived marketing tool. Every post needs to be constructed with an awareness of the realities of your brand, which means you have to be true to who you are and prepared to take the good with the negative.
Any time you start a conversation in social media, there’s a chance it will veer into unexpected territory. When that happens, you have an opportunity to gain some learnings about how your brand is perceived. Then you can develop a strategy to address misconceptions and, ideally, work on fixing legitimate problems that have been brought to your attention.