This Month in Social Media: The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly

A lot has happened this month in the world of social media, so read on for The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly.

The Good

First up, there have been some major milestones this March:

Twitter turned 5 years old, and March 21st marked the anniversary of the first tweet.  Since that day in 2006, Twitter’s numbers have been pretty impressive.

  • It took 3 years, 2 months, and 1 day from that first tweet to the billionth tweet on Twitter.  It now takes only 1 week for users to send a billion tweets.
  • There has been an average of 460,000 new accounts per day over the last month.
  • Over the last month, people sent an average of 140 million tweets per day

LinkedIn also hit a major milestone this month by surpassing 100 million members.  The company announced their success on the blog:

The Bad


Earlier this month, a tweet from Chrysler, via their social media agency, New Media Strategies (NMS), created the type of publicity the auto manufacturer wasn’t hoping for.  The NMS employee who sent the tweet, says he thought he was using his personal account when he sent the following:

Following the tweet, Chrysler issued a statement on their blog stating they do not tolerate inappropriate language, and within an hour, the NMS employee was fired.  Chrysler later annoucned they will not renew their contract with New Media Strategies.

The Ugly


Comedian Gilbert Gottfried, the voice of the Aflac Duck, sent several offensive tweets following the Japanese Tsunami.  The insurance company was quick to act and fired Gottfried, issuing this statement:

"Gilbert's recent comments about the crisis in Japan were lacking in humor and certainly do not represent the thoughts and feelings of anyone at Aflac.  There is no place for anything but compassion and concern during these difficult times."

This month we’ve seen the good in social media, and how important it is for your business to have a presence on networks like LinkedIn and Twitter.  As these networks continue to grow, it is increasingly important for businesses to be utilizing these marketing tools as best they can.  Unfortunately, we've also seen the bad and the ugly this month, more of a guide on “what not to do.”  It's important to remember that social media is an extension of your company, your brand, and your other marketing efforts.  Make sure you have a solid social media strategy in place, whether you're managing your company's social media efforts in house or through another agency.  Your online marketing efforts should complement each other, get the results your working toward, and positively represent your company at all times.