Lessons Learned from DiGiorno’s Social Media Screwup

Posted on September 10th, 2014 by

Why it Matters to Look Before you Tweet

Social media sites exploded with activity after the Baltimore Ravens fired Ray Rice following the release of a shocking video that showed him punching his then-girlfriend, Janay Palmer, and knocking her unconscious. Users were quick to lobby accusations of guilt: at Rice for punching a woman, at the NFL for failing to punish him in time and at Janay herself for staying with an abusive man.Law Firm Marketing Since 1998

The incident inspired a conversation about domestic violence, and the hashtag #whyistayed started trending on Twitter. Victims of domestic violence used the hashtag to explain why they stayed in toxic relationships. Before researching the tag, pizza company DiGiorno jumped aboard the bandwagon, tweeting: “#WhyIStayed You had pizza.”

DiGiorno immediately realized its mistake. Just minutes after posting the tweet, users slammed the pizza maker’s account for being insensitive to domestic violence and for using the issue as a marketing opportunity.

Despite its sizeable screwup, DiGiorno tried to make amends the best it could. It immediately tweeted an apology, followed by hundreds of personalized mea culpas to users who blasted the company for its insensitivity.

What DiGiorno Did Right:

  • It was prompt. DiGiorno applied the same expediency that brought forth the offending tweet to begin making amends.
  • It was honest. It didn’t try to deflect blame or use ignorance as an excuse. The company openly admitted that it messed up.
  • It was sincere. The tone DiGiorno used in both its apology tweet and its individual tweets to users was grave and somber. The social media manager also used “I” instead of “we”, giving it a personal touch (and deflecting blame away from the company as a whole).
  • It was thorough. Instead of just ignoring the problem or copy-pasting the same apology dozens of times, it crafted a customized apology for each offended user.

Corporations do themselves a disservice by taking a casual approach to social media platforms. It takes time, care and attention to detail to manage a successful social media presence, time that many business owners simply do not have. This is why many organizations outsource their social media responsibilities to marketing agencies that can stay up-to-date the best practices and maintain a beneficial relationship with the company’s client base.

Attorneys Online, Inc.Legal Marketing Specialists Since 1998