The past few days have been a whirlwind to say the least. I flew to The Bay over the weekend to be in the madness of #SB50 and quickly realized that I haven’t had the chance to write anything recently. During that same time, The Bey decided that we were all going to stop talking about “dabbing” and “Omaha” and start saying “I Slay.”
Like many others around the globe, I am in love with Formation. The song, video, Blue Ivy, you name it. But that’s not why I’m here. I’m here to talk about brands not hopping on a social media opportunity when it’s laid out to them on a silver Ultimate Feast platter.
I was having a conversation with my sorority sisters recently about Beyoncé and how any product or brand she mentions basically just received a freebie. The problem is, when celebrities mention brands, some of them do not jump at the opportunity for social media gold.
So here is where I talk about Red Lobster. The struggling chain restaurant received a mention in a brand new Beyoncé song the day before the biggest sporting event of the year. Red Lobster didn’t have to drop millions on a Super Bowl ad because Beyoncé just gave them an ad for FREE. Any social media or brand manager across the globe would be grinning from ear-to-ear ready to take full advantage of this opportunity.
However, Red Lobster just decided to wait and wait and wait. I constantly checked their Twitter waiting for a clever response but I eventually quit because they took way too long. Eight hours to be exact.
I’m really not sure what the delay was. Was it because the line the brand was mentioned in was vulgar? Was it because Red Lobster’s social media team is outsourced? Was it because their social media team just isn’t hip? Who knows, but they failed. People had a lot to say about the tweet (many said it wasn’t good enough) but they may have got by with it if they had replied faster. I mean it’s not like they customized the photo or anything…
The fact of the matter is brands have to learn to respond quickly. If there was a customer service issue, Red Lobster (hopefully) would have responded within 60 minutes. A mention from a high profile celeb should have the same response time as it could result in a major win for a company’s bottom line.
Now let me quickly turn to Airbnb. I’m a fan of them as a traveler (I stayed in an Airbnb this past weekend) and as a marketer. I think their branding is great and their social media game is strong. They also clearly know how to take advantage of a great opportunity.
For example, Queen B decided to rent a mansion via Airbnb for #SB50 and posted it on Facebook:
It was a Super weekend Airbnb
It was a Super weekend Airbnb
It was a Super weekend Airbnbwww.facebook.com
It took AirBnb 24 minutes to share the post on Facebook with the caption “Airbn-bey” and (bonus!) 51 minutes to share on Twitter, a platform Beyoncé hasn’t used in two-and-a-half years. AirBnb wasn’t entirely creative, but like I said, I think people went with it because they replied quickly.
The bottom line is social media pros must pay attention. Set Google Alerts for your brand. Get on Snapchat, Vine, Tumblr, Peach and the many other platforms the kids are on these days so that you know what is trending. Keep an eye on brands the kids follow like MTV (who just launched a Snapchat Discover channel) and Taco Bell. You never know when your next big marketing opportunity will come your way.