How The Entenmann’s / Casey Anthony Twitter Debacle Was Actually A Success

For those that missed the HUGE news, Likeable Media issued a single tweet on behalf of their client Entenmann’s that make a tongue in cheek joke about the Casey Anthony Trial.

Cue online righteous indignation by people with too much time on their hands.  Boycott Likeable Media!  Boycott Entenmann’s!  How DARE they Hashtag surf across such an important topic!  How could they be so stupid?  The damage that will be done to Entenman’s is irreparable!

Seriously?   It’s a tweet, not a tattoo.   If you don’t like it, move on to the next one.

Regardless, despite the fact that the tweet was almost immediately taken down along with a twitter update, this resulted in a flood of apologies from Entenmann’s and Likeable Media.

Here’s Entenmann’s statement:

“We are saddened and disappointed that an outside agency handling our social media posted a comment on Twitter associating the Entenmann’s brand with the not guilty verdict in the Casey Anthony trial. This Tweet does not reflect the values of our company, our associates or the Entenmann’s brand. We have taken immediate steps to make sure the individuals that created this post will not work on our account again. Additionally, we are taking steps to ensure that future tweets reflect our company’s values. We sincerely apologize for this incident.”

And here’s a part of the Likeable Media apology:

We apologized on behalf of the Entenmann’s brand right away, however, as the leader of Entenmann’s social media agency, I would like to personally say I’m sorry if the tweet offended anyone. The truth is, our team was leveraging the trending topics and moving so fast they neglected to see what the hashtag was related to. It was obviously insensitive, and on behalf of the entire Likeable team and our client, Entenmann’s, I’m sorry. Please know that I am working on refining our process to ensure that this does not happen again.

I personally found two things interesting about this whole story:

First, Dave Kerpen from Likeable Media (who honestly did an amazing job responding to all comments and gripes) was basically stating that this was some sort of “mistake” — like a typo that should have been caught or accidentally sending a public tweet vs. a DM.  This, as opposed to saying something like, “I’m sorry if some took our tweet the wrong way, we obviously failed to echo the value of the brand and will do better in the future”.

I don’t believe this was a “mistake”.  I’m confident that the person that sent this tweet out knew exactly what it was referring to and thought it was creative and clever.  Would it have been sent if it required approval by Likeable senior management?  By Entenmann’s marketing team?  Maybe not.  Good marketers should be seeking unique ways to get people excited and read our stuff.   I hope that the person responsible for the tweet did not lose their job and was actually given a private “attaboy” for thinking outside the box.  Twitter can be a testing ground for concepts and ideas (ideally with client’s approval) — before you spend millions on more expensive wider reaching campaigns.

Second, let’s talk results.  This may actually be a case where “Even ‘bad’ press is good press”.  A few months ago, there was a similar “scandal”, when Kenneth Cole tweeted, “Millions are in uproar in #Cairo. Rumor is they heard our new Spring Collection is available online at http://bit.ly/KCairo-KC”.  This arguably more offensive tweet resulted in thousands of new followers in the first few hours — and a great deal of buzz.

Similarly, Entenmann’s Twitter followers were relatively flat for months and amazingly “suffered” a 35% spike in followers after this disaster.   Terrible, huh?

Entenmann's Twittercounter Chart

There may actually be some people that were so horribly offended by this single tweet that they will illogically blackmail the brand.

However, I realized that all this talk about Entenmann’s made me remember how much I missed their donuts and will be going out of my way to find them the next time I’m at the grocery store.  Since I’m still relatively upset since the jury couldn’t find Casey Anthony guilty, a little comfort food might help.

 

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