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Your Brand’s Social Media and a Celebrity Passing

David Bosley

With the passing of David Bowie, Carrie Fisher, Gene Wilder, and so many others, 2016 has been a tough year for celebrity deaths.

Major brands require a near-constant social media presence, and as such, often find themselves chiming in on current events – and celebrity deaths are no exception. This raises the question: what does “brand grief” look like? Thankfully, “Trendology” author Chris Kerns recently laid out guidelines on how brands should treat their social media accounts when they address such a tragedy.

  1. Be true to your brand.
    There are few things more jarring than sympathy that doesn’t come across as genuine. After a celebrity death, does it make sense to recognize it based on your company’s background and branding?
  2. Celebrate a connection
    Businesses that choose to join the conversation on remembrance need to understand that it’s a delicate subject. Do everything possible to make your message authentic. If your brand has a personal history with a celebrity, highlighting that connection provides real authenticity.
  3. Don’t sell, just share
    If you decide to recognize a celebrity death on social media, remember, this is no time to push a product. Keep messaging short and focused on the individual’s life and impact on society.

Some brands take serious wrong turns on social media following tragic events, and these missteps affect their image negatively for a long time. Luckily, with the help of a well-rounded digital strategy and the guidance of a team of experienced digital marketing professionals, these blunders can be avoided.

Get in touch with PBJ Marketing today.

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