The Web is abuzz with the latest Mitt Romney foot-in-mouth incident: The Mitt Romney Mother Jones Video. In this video, Romney basically complains that Obama has fostered a condition of dependency, with over 47% of Americans depending on the government yet paying no tax. Well, let’s leave the facts and politics aside, and as someone who teaches Social Media Marketing Online, let’s focus on this example of how Mitt just doesn’t get social media.
Some points –
First and foremost, the cameras are always on! There isn’t really anything private anymore for a big public figure, a big company, or a big brand. So if your company deals with the public, re-educate every single employee to realize that they are your spokesperson. There isn’t a PR department anymore: YOU are the PR department. So be nice, don’t put your foot in your mouth, be respectful. Or else? You’ll be on camera, and it might go viral.
Second, what goes viral? Videos especially. But even more the shocking stuff, the gross stuff, the funny stuff. Think ‘rats in KFC,’ or ‘Mitt Romney explaining he doesn’t really like poor people. That’s what goes viral on the Web and on YouTube.
Third, think of what Seth Godin calls the ‘Sneezers.’ These are people like Mother Jones Magazine with a mouthpiece, with many social connections – who can put out a message and get everyone to notice. Even more so when they are against you (as Mother Jones is against Mitt) and when they have vested interests (Mother Jones wants people to read their blog, subcribe, promote them).
The Mitt Romney Mother Jones Video Moment
So Mitt’s Mother Jones moment teaches those of us involved in Social Media… to be careful of the big negatives in Social Media – the gross stuff, the outrageous stuff, the stuff that our enemies will share, and the worse enemies are those with big audiences.
If you want to read the Mother Jones article and see the video, go here.