It’s always shocking and somewhat disturbing to see brands posting inappropriate things online. It’s unnatural and just feels wrong – they should know better, right? However, as we preach in the social media world, the point of social sharing platforms like Facebook and Twitter is to be human and build deeper relationships with your connections. And the fact remains that, even with an abundance of technology at our disposal, humans make mistakes.
Social Media Mishaps to Learn From
By now, you’ve probably seen or heard about the KitchenAid incident regarding the recent Presidential debate. If not, you can see a snapshot of the Twitter no-no below and read more about it here.
Upon first glance, you’re likely to gasp and wonder why in the world a company would post something so insensitive and politically-driven in nature, when they’re actually in the business of kitchen appliances. Upon further review, however, it’s revealed that an employee mistakenly sent the message to the company feed instead of a personal account.
Not even two years ago, something similar happened with Red Cross (see story here). Drinking and late-night Tweeting clearly don’t mesh well together, as you can see from the snapshot below.
Fortunately, Red Cross was able to turn the situation around…
…and even gain good publicity from it, as the brewery mentioned in the “rogue” tweet decided to get involved and use the hashtag to encourage donations to Red Cross.
Although the initial tweets in the examples above are definitely cringe-worthy, following a few basic steps will help reduce the likelihood of a universal facepalm.
3 Steps to Sleeping Easy in Social Recruiting
1. Hire trustworthy talent community managers. If you’re ready to explore the world of social recruiting, there’s a chance you’ll hire externally. Your sourcers, recruiters and project managers are already busy and may not even have an interest in managing your community. Your company’s marketing team is immersed in social media from the client/customer perspective.
If so, this may be one of those instances when reviewing a candidate’s social media presence is a possibility. What are they Tweeting about? What type of content are they sharing with the public? If you identify questionable behavior, it’s a red flag. Even if the candidate can clearly separate their personal and professional lives, that doesn’t mean there won’t be incidents like those outlined above.
2. Provide training and clear guidelines. Whether you hire externally or shift responsibilities to your current team, you need to provide proper training and set clear guidelines in order to minimize the risk of a social recruiting or employer brand crisis.
It’s likely that anyone taking on the community management responsibilities will have used social media personally, but do they understand your brand voice? Are they aware of what’s appropriate and what’s not? Do posts need to be approved, or can your employees use their best judgment? Can company accounts be accessed via mobile devices? These are things you must consider.
3. Prepare for unexpected disasters. Many companies still shy away from social media as an engagement tool due to fear of the possibilities, thinking, ”What if this happens to us?” Even with the most professional, well-trained employees, there are always potential catastrophes to prepare for. By accepting this fact and not avoiding social recruiting all together, you’re already heading in the right direction.
Next, have a plan in place. Who will take charge? How will the issue be resolved? Where will you do damage control and in what manner? Consider the worst that could happen and plan for it. Then, minor issues along the way will be less of a cause for panic.
Though this post may simplify the process, there are many more details you must work through. If you have a talent community manager for social recruiting, what other steps help your team stay on track?