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The burgeoning world of social media could be a huge threat to your brand if not managed properly. On the other hand, the world of social media may be the biggest marketing opportunity in years. The difference is all in how proactive you are in protecting yourself by becoming part of the broader social networking community. Social networking sites offer avenues for you to grow closer to your customers. Some have become popular and effective online locations for corporate, as well as personal activities.
Great article; I have to agree at this point constant monitoring of the social web is probably the best (and only viable) cure against brand jacking;
Frederick, it's always amusing to see people writing about the Mad Men on Twitter kerfuffle because most get it wrong. And now that most of us who tweeted as Mad Men characters (I tweet as @PeggyOlson and others from Sterling Cooper) have revealed our identities, it's not that hard to get the real story.
AMC never sent any of the Mad Men characters cease and desist letters. They also never asked for – or received – any of their character IDs on Twitter.
It was widely reported that AMC contacted Twitter (which may have been in the form of a cease and desist letter – but NOBODY actually knows that except AMC and Twitter) about their characters and Twitter reacted by suspending the accounts of the first three characters who showed up (@Don_Draper, @Joan_Holloway, and @PeggyOlson) for less than 24 hours. However, AMC never spoke to any of us or asked us for their character IDs.
The man behind @Don_Draper, Paul Isakson, has since given up on tweeting for Don and handed his character ID over to AMC’s interactive agency, but that was his choice. And that happened over three months after Twitter suspended our characters in late August, 2008.
Big picture, obviously AMC was (and is) content to allow its fans to continue tweeting. I suspect this is because most of us tweeting as Mad Men characters have treated it as a serious effort and have not done anything to damage the AMC brand. For all practical purposes, we’re doing their marketing on Twitter for them. In the early days, I treated it like a real job, because I knew there would be no actionable data or insights gleaned without that.
That said, as a marketer, I’d rather manage Twittertainment for a brand than leave it to fan fiction because there is so much more you can do with it if you have behind-the-scenes information. However, there are definite pros and cons for both approaches.
For more information about convergence culture (fan fiction and related topics), check out the writings of MIT professor Henry Jenkins: http://henryjenkins.org
For a short history of the Mad Men on Twitter, see this: http://supportingcharacters.com/madmen/project-history
@CarriBugbee aka @PeggyOlson
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Thanks for the good info here.
"as far as tracking brand misuse is concerned, there are services available that will help you track misuse and help you decide which sites you need to pay attention to"
Can you name any companies that offer these services? Sounds like a lot of work I'd be willing to pay someone else to handle.
@Handbags4hunger There are social media management services out there that allow for both keeping a tight grip on your social media accounts and passwords and constant monitoring of the entire web for identifying possible brandjacking threats. I can recommend one http://crowdcontrolhq.com/
Hope this is useful :)
I have been using Google Alerts for this purpose although it looks like Crowdcontrolhq also monitors Google+, while I don't know if Google Alerts does also.
Appreciate the follow up! ;)
Lisa @ Handbags4Hunger