With the advent of the bedroom journalist and the Prosumer (Professional Consumer) can your brand be truly protected? The old adage “if you do a good job they’ll tell one person but if you do a bad job they’ll tell ten people” can now be multiplied by thousand in a matter of a few minutes. An example of social media backlash is the United Breaks Guitars – song posted on Youtube, which caused United Airlines shares to drop by an estimated 10% in four days, which lost its shareholders over $180 million.

The questions has to be, can social media have such a negative effect on a brand? Have I been missing an opportunity to create better revenue and improve my brand online?

Without a clear direction, social media can become an all-consuming monster that eats you up and spits out the bits and bytes of your brand. Sensible cost-effective ways to use the monster to your advantage must have a clear direction and use the following basic techniques:


  • Post no more than two interesting topics about your business every couple of days, beware of overkill.
  • Update your company page status every day.
  • The more likes and comments the better, use negative comments to your advantage by offering exceptional customer service.


  • Try to tweet daily, make it product-specific and try not to have tenuous links, people will see through poor spin.
  • Re-tweet relevant information.
  • Talk to your customers and contacts; don’t just use Twitter as an announcement service.


  • Follow relevant companies you are dealing with.
  • Recommendations are great, however don’t over-egg the pudding. Most people know this a non-policed way to get your name in shinning lights. Use good, trusted clients that add gravitas to your brand and only use a few.
  • Use connections to make more connections.

Most of all control the monster you unleash or you will find the following:

  • Wasted time & resource
  • Backlash
  • Social Media Fatigue
  • No tangible ROI

Everyone knows Google is the most popular search engine, but did you know that Youtube overtook Yahoo a few years back as the second most popular search engine? It just goes to show that there is now an increasing number of creative ways to improve your brand and sell your company’s goods online. And as a song about a broken guitar has taught us; don’t ignore your customers’ online presence. If they are out there talking about you, what are they saying?