Benchmark Business Group

Epic Fail #3: When Social Media Goes Wrong

March 18, 2014

The Sochi 2014 Winter Olympics have been billed as the legacy for President Putin as he promised these games were a showcase of what the Russian people can do.  In case you missed it, the first week of tweets, comments, and reports were focused largely on the hotel issues that many members of the media encountered.  These issues ranged from uncompleted rooms, to missing doorhandles, to missing reservations.  The media took to social media using the hash tag #sochiproblems, which went viral.  It was certainly not the message the Games organizers were wanting to spread.  Even the Huffington Post got in on the action with this headline, Sochi Olympics 2014: 15 Epic Hotel Fail In The 'Russian Riviera.'

If there is one thing the Sochi Winter Olympic games highlighted it was the power of social media.  The tweets and posts were often humorous and spread quickly with little to no reaction from the organizers.  The epic fail wasn't just the hotel issues, but the way the organizers failed to respond to the social media firestorm.  As the mainstream media reported what was happening regarding the lack of  preparation with housing, history was cemented as social media had already let the world know that the housing for the winter games was an Epic Fail.


Questions to Ponder

  • How is your business/organization capitalizing on the real-time information stream of social media?
  • Who is responsible in your business/organization to monitor, post, and respond to social media?
  • Why is it important to be aware of what is being shared on social media?
  • Does your business have a plan in place to respond to complaints that are broadcast using social media?

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