5 Times Businesses Failed on Social Media

It’s no secret that social media is great for businesses. We know that these platforms represent a huge opportunity for brand exposure. The power social media has is great, but there also lies vulnerability; when you make a mistake on social, there’s a good chance that lots of people are watching you, and there’s never an easy way out of mistakes.

You may be surprised, but even massive businesses with expert social media teams are still making major mistakes. One way to ensure that you don’t make blunders on social, is to keep an eye on what mishaps both businesses and individuals have incurred previously and learning from their mistakes.
So, let’s take a look at some of the most toe-curling social moments that have happened over the last few years…

DiGiorno Pizza using an inappropriate hashtag…

When DiGiorno noticed that the hashtag #WhyIStayed was trending, they probably should’ve done some research about why this particular hashtag had been coined… The majority of tweets using this hashtag and featured poignant messages from women explaining what made them stay in their abusive relationships. The hashtag was created by writer and domestic abuse survivor Beverly Gooden who aimed to, ‘change the conversation’ about domestic abuse.

And then DiGiorno Pizza thought that they’d contribute to said conversation without researching the powerful message behind it. Giving their uneducated input, DiGiorno Pizza Tweeted, “#WhyIStayed You had pizza.”  Not cool DiGiorno, just not cool.  A few minutes later, they Tweeted an apology stating that they hadn’t been aware of the significance of the hashtag. Moral of the story? Always research the trending hashtags before using it. Do some digging and make sure that it is truly relevant to your brand.


British Airways Promoted Their Direct Competitor

When sharing posts on Facebook or Twitter, we’d reccomend promoting your own brand, instead of resharing content created by your competitor and giving them free publicity… Alas, just over seven months ago British Airways had a bit of a mishap when they accidentally shared a Virgin Atlantic Facebook post advertising non-stop flights to London with Virgin’s tagline “There’s never been a better time to visit London.”

What made this even better worse with Virgin’s quick witted response saying “Thanks British Airways! So kind of you to share!” Moral of this story? Make sure you check what content you’re sharing and who produced it.  This way, you can stop yourself sharing a competitor’s content and avoid making your brand look a little thoughtless.

social media fails British Airways

MTV Australia joked about racism

Racism and sexism are sure fire ways to get your brand in the news – but any business with integritiy and morals wouldn’t even dream of promoting anything of this nature. In come MTV Australia, who were accused of being incredibly racist following a tweet making fun of America Ferrera and Eva Longoria’s accents in an English language Golden Globes speech. Within seconds of publishing the tweet, they were branded ‘racist’ and ‘disgusting’ on the internet, for everyone to see (eeek.)

A follow-up tweet by MTV Australia apologised, claiming the tweet was just an innocent joke made in response to the two actresses joke.

“We get it was a bad call. We’ll leave the humour to @rickygervais”

Moral of the story? Don’t hastily tweet, think through what you’re saying and get a second pair of eyes to check it out before you post it! That way you’ll avoid offensive and embarrasing mishaps like this one!

Social Media Mistakes MTV Australia


The White House’s Sean Spicer shared private and confidential information

Putting sensitive information on any social media platform is something everyone knows is a bad idea, and this social media mistake is one of our favourite. At the beginning of this year, White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer tweeted what looked like his Twitter password. Oh the irony.

Whilst we cannot be 100% sure if it was his password, all the signs suggest that Sean had tweeted his password to his thousands of followers. The n9y25ah7 that was displayed, perfectly fits the Twitter password criteria, and requires a minimum of six characters.

We don’t feel like we should spell out the moral of this story… This one is self-explanatory – do not press ‘tweet’ or ‘send’ without checking your message.

Social media fails Sean Spicer

Little Mix copy and paste for promotion

If you’re being paid to promote a business, and everything you need is being sent over just make sure to double check everything before you press publish. If there’s one thing that celebs just can’t seem to comprehend when it comes to using social, it’s copying and pasting messages on posts.

Little Mix forgot to delete the media manager’s message before posting an Instagram picture, which was clearly for paid promotion. In doing so, it instantly removes any sincerity from the post, but does make it a hell of a lot funnier.

Double check and even triple check the text you have added before you post, it is worth it honestly!
social media mistakes Little Mix Jade Instagarm
Want to make sure you don’t get yourself into a similar pickle? We can offer tips and advice to give you a little helping hand. Get in touch with Ricemedia on 01212 200 3336 or get in touch today.

Share your thoughts

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.