Will Tweet for flowers… and truth

Ivy Bean, at 104 years old, has made headlines with her Facebook page – over 4,000 friends – and her arrival on Twitter –...

Ivy Bean, at 104 years old, has made headlines with her Facebook page – over 4,000 friends – and her arrival on Twitter – over 16,000 followers.

It’s a great story, but where it gets sticky is with the revelation that the Geek Squad and a journalist actually created her accounts as a stunt.

Outrage? Surprisingly, no.

Why? This is the kind of story that often consumes hours of news.

The answer: Authenticity.

Regardless of what forces conspired to bring this woman into the digital age, Ivy has been prolific, using her Twitter and Facebook pages to interact with people from around the world. Ivy’s tweets and updates fill out a story we’re all part of – the search for real human connection.

In the world of influence, authenticity is crucial.

That’s especially true when dealing with a crisis. This mother’s day, FTD had an unfortunate meltdown, failing to deliver flowers to mothers around the country. As a mother, all I can say is, ‘grrrrr.’ What’s worse, they fumbled the response. The Twitter-verse was ablaze with, well, heated tweets.

Finally realizing people were upset, FTD offered a whopping $10 off, resulting in a “too little, too late” response from consumers and demonstrating a surprising lack of understanding of the emotions associated with the celebration of Mom.

People have plenty of choices about where to get their content (and flowers), which companies to engage with, and what organizations to interact with. You can have a well-dressed pig, you can have a decent understanding of who you want to reach, but, at the end of the day, if audiences don’t trust you and feel connected, then you don’t have anything.

Authentically,

Jen Houston – Waggener Edstrom Worldwide, SVP, gobal lead, WE Studio D

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