DiGiorno Is Actually Covering Its Social Media Screwup Pretty Well

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Last night, twitter users were tweeting poignant and sad stories about domestic abuse under the hashtags #whyIleft and #whyIstayed, about their decisions to finally escape toxic living situations or to continue living in them. And then Digiorno tweeted this:

This is a common social media story - brands see trending hashtags and just throw something into the stream without necessarily looking at what the hashtag is in relation to. Entenmenn's tweeted about their "tasty treats" with a #notguilty hashtag, not realizing that it was related to the Casey Anthony verdict. Usually when brands embarrass themselves like this - like when Kenneth Cole tweeted that the unrest in Tahrir Square was due to its new spring collection - they just delete the tweet, hunker down, and wait for the storm to pass. DiGiorno, on the other hand, has actually addressed the screwup pretty directly. The person behind DiGiorno's social media account has been tweeted individual messages of apology at users for the last 12 hours.

Of course I think that the best way to deal with this kind of mistake is simply not to make it in the first place. It is absolutely the responsibility of a "social media manager" to know how to communicate carefully and effectively. But if you are a business and you are are this tone deaf in public, it seems like it is actually a pretty thoughtful move to spend the next twelve hours apologizing. It shows a willingness to be transparent about how the company made this mistake in the first place, to reach out to victims of domestic violence acknowledging a stupid error, and to try and actually utilize social media not just as a messaging platform but as a dialogue with potential customers.

This sort of thing will definitely happen again in the future. For the time being, DiGiorno has set the standard by which other companies should handle social media mistakes.