#TroyTested Becomes One of 2014’s First Facebook Fails

By on January 28, 2014

In December, Facebook rolled out autoplaying for video ads in newsfeeds, much to the dismay of Head and Shoulders’ Facebook page followers.

The brand leveraged this new Facebook feature using a commercial created as part of the brand’s #TroyTested campaign featuring Pittsburgh Steeler Troy Polamalu.

The ad has consistently appeared in the news feeds of its followers, resulting in thousands of negative comments.

hands ad

Comments range from, “Tired of seeing this in my newsfeed!!! Take it down!!!” to “How do I get this crap off my FB,” to “I will never purchase this product as a result of this marketing.” However, the brand continues to run the ad on a daily basis.

hands complaints 2

“The ad has garnered more than 40,000 likes and more than 5,000 shares, which on the surface looks like a victory,” said John Souza, Social Media Marketing University founder and strategist. “In reality, the campaign is bordering on catastrophic.”

“Social media case studies such as this one illustrate that brands still continue to embark on social media campaigns without taking the time to understand social media marketing or their target customers,” Souza continued. “This should also be concerning to Troy Polamalu. This level of social media backlash could potentially be damaging to his brand.”

When asked what brands should take away from the Head and Shoulders #TroyTested campaign, Souza offered the following:

1) Don’t take metrics at face value. When brands evaluate social media solely as a numbers game, they will almost always lose. Measure success by looking at the full picture.

2) Make social listening a priority. Consistent listening followed by appropriate and necessary action is key to maintaining customer loyalty and overall social media success.

3) Social media spam is still spam. Inundating your fans and followers with the same messages over and over illustrates that you’re irresponsible and out of touch with social media consumers, regardless of whether a social site makes it permissible.

4) Your best judgment is a best practice. Because social media is constantly evolving and new platforms and features are emerging daily, there won’t always be an associated best practice in place. However, using best judgment and a common sense approach can almost always prevent a possible social media fiasco in cases like this.

About Ty Mays Kelty

Ty Mays Kelty is a public relations and social media strategist and freelance writer based in Atlanta, GA. Follow her @PerfectPitchPR.
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