In a world where social media has an ever-increasing influence on our decisions as consumers, it’s now more important than ever for brands to connect and engage with audiences through social media. Reactive social media is where a brand or business proactively engages with social content, viral news, or trending topics in real-time via social networks.
Naturally engaging with topics in real-time can be somewhat risky, mostly due to the small amount of time a brand or business has to curate a relevant response and or media to compliment that response before it becomes irrelevant. There is also a risk of the brands potentially coming across with the wrong tone of voice, or having a backlash from your audience which is why it’s better to be safe than sorry when it comes to reactive social media content. It is always a good idea to ask yourself the question: “how could this potentially go wrong?”
Take the example of Cinnabon who once tweeted “RIP Carrie Fisher, you’ll always have the best buns in the galaxy,” referring to her famous hair rolls in “Star Wars.” The insensitive tweet lasted all of 45 minutes before the brand removed it from Twitter due to the backlash received. Although the brand did say sorry shortly after this, it would have inevitably caused damage to their overall reputation.
When Beyoncé launched her new clothing line using the pretty much exact same colour theme as the Sainsbury’s uniform, it presented a perfect opportunity for the marketing team at Sainsbury’s, and they obliged perfectly with an image of their uniform and a simplistic overlay which read ‘the original’.
Naturally, American Beyoncé fans responded to this to defend Beyoncé whilst not quite understanding the joke and British sense of humour. Us brits then defended Sainsbury’s through social media and just like that, millions of people were talking about it which no doubt increased exposure for both Sainsbury’s and Beyoncé.
Created by an external marketing agency, the tweet quickly went viral and generated thousands of likes and retweets within minutes. The Huffington post later announced that “one of the most buzz-worthy ads of the Super Bowl on Sunday wasn’t even a commercial – it was a mere tweet from Oreo during the blackout.”
Twitter went into a total frenzy back in February 2021 when Weetabix posted a tweet suggesting that serving ‘Heinz Beanz on bix for breakfast with a twist’, which resulted in a hilarious commentary from multiple major brands and even the NHS.
Posting onto the major social network Twitter, the marketing team at Weetabix posted “Why should bread have all the fun, when there’s Weetabix? Serving up @HeinzUK Beanz on bix for breakfast with a twist. #ItHasToBeHeinz #HaveYouHadYourWeetabix”.
If Weetabix were looking for a reaction to their tweet, they certainly got one, with comments of disgust and concern from some major global brands. Here are some of our favourite replies from some brands you are probably already familiar with.
When Harry and Megan Markle left the royal family in 2020 and decided to resign from the royal family as senior royals before eloping to Canada, the world was watching and clearly, a very bold marketing team at Burger King were also watching, which resulted in this tweet being posted on to Twitter.
With no direct collation to Harry and no images posted of Harry himself for obvious reasons, they left it to the imagination of their audience. And with the news being so viral everyone knew exactly what they were talking about, which is why they received thousands of likes within hours of the tweet being published, we can safely say that their PR stunt worked like magic.
If you’re unsure how to deploy an effective reactive social marketing strategy for your organisation, Lowaire Digital has years of experience working with global brands to create engaging content which resonates with your target customer segments across major social media platforms.
Feel free to get in touch with our friendly social media team today to find out how we can help push your brand’s social visibility to the next level.