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Hacking on Twitter – Big Business?

 

Okay…it’s all over the news. McDonald’s – one of the most well-known names in the world – found themselves hitting the top of the Twitter trending charts at the exact same time that their competitor, Burger King, did. Turned out that Burger King’s Twitter account had, indeed, been hacked. And this hacking had transformed Burger King into a McDonald’s account, with the BK logo being replaced by the beloved ‘golden arches.’

Tweets that were what you would call…not humorous, with some being way over the line appeared, drawing many individuals to that site immediately Reaction was fast, with individuals offering humor, mostly, at what was going on. They actually spent their time making fun of Burger King.

Hmmm…now, yes, hacking is bad. Hacking is not something anyone should ever do to another company. However, want to know #4something really interesting that came from all this nonsense? The followers of Burger King jumped by 30% because of this one hacking incident.

Talk about an incredible opportunity to shine. The incident that should have been completely bad actually opened the door for Burger King to prove, as fast as possible and with as much etiquette and humor as possible, that they are the ones the world needs to follow. This hacking that could cost them money also could become a huge social media ‘gold medal’ for them, if their marketing and publicity team were able to use the ‘bad’ thing and turn it into a ‘good’ thing that increases BK’s ROI.

There are many journalists as well as social media experts who went into imaginative overdrive with this one. In fact, there are articles on Forbes giving ideas to BK that they could possibly tweet things like: “Having a bad day? We can relate. So…Whoppers are half off ‘til Sunday.”

This particular hacking incident has brought about a new way of looking at things. No, of course, hacking is not right and no one wants to experience this. BUT, when you look at the Hollywood scene and the humorists and comedians who are actually making a ton of money by taking slanders said against them and turning them into self-deprecating jokes – hacking does offer a way for businesses to bring in more clients by using some of that dry, sarcastic humor that everyone seems to love.

What is the one thing you need, however, to get this done right? Time is of the essence to say the least when this occurs, which means you have to have a Social Media Team on board that is already watching your company’s social media presence 24/7. Only in that way can you jump on a strange opportunity like this and nip the bad things in the bud right away. This then opens up the door for you to joke and have fun with the individuals around the globe and bring in MORE business.

When a high-profile corporate Twitter account is hacked – this is usually detected quickly, but oddly enough it took an hour for BK to notice what was going on and shut things down. Yes, there were slanderous and sometimes horrific tweets; and many were simply over the line, but these hackers did bring more people to BK to look in on them…and stay there.

Now BK is not the only high-profile client that this has happened to. We all know that Microsoft was the victim of hacking, as well as Facebook and Apple and Twitter. It seems that no customer data was stolen, but there were certain computer units in their corporation infected by malicious software. So, you see, there are supreme downsides of what they had to deal with. However, when something like this Burger King attack comes into play – people seem to see an upside to the negative situation.

When headlines are created, people read them – that’s a fact. The stranger and crazier the headline is, more people tune in. Yet another fact. And, the last fact? Hacking will continue. The bad stuff always does. So think about it…if bad things are going to occur anyway, wouldn’t it be far better to have a Social Media Team on hand that is already watching every move being made so that the response can be fast, perhaps funny, and increase sales instead of harming sales? In that way, your company – large or small – will be protected from the ‘anonymous’ jokers out there who have nothing better to do with their time.

Make sure the ‘team’ you have behind you own the expertise and skills, not to mention the ultimate products and services, that will constantly keep your company in ‘good’ standing and allow your company to only appear in headlines that increase followers and sales while keeping your good and trusted name intact!

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