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#KFC #Fail Proves #SocialMedia #Marketing is Both a Blessing and a Curse

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KFC have faced a rice-box-based PR disaster after one customer shared their displeasure on Reddit. The user, who goes by the internet moniker 'athiestlee', expressed his upset at the stark contrast between the item advertised by KFC and the meagre semblance of that product he actually received. Twitter users also took to the site to share their contempt for the colonel's lastest offering.

The original post has started a trend of other equally unimpressed fast food customers sharing their unappetising meals. Domino's, Subway and Burger King have all been targeted for their aesthetic inadequacy:-


























It is a well-known fact that social media is a revolutionary tool for digital marketing due to its outreach. However, as this story proves, it can also cause strikingly bad publicity on a huge scale in a short space of time. In light of this, we at Social Songbird have compiled a list of potential disadvantages that social media can have for your brand, as well as some warning signs that your social media campaign is failing.


  • Business risks: Part of using social media as a marketing strategy means that you are effectively handing over a portion of the control to employees and customers. This means that any discontent from either party can be aired publicly without much authority. Negative comments can cause bad publicity for prospective new clients, but to hide delete them would suggest inauthenticity and potentially lead to distrust of your brand.
  • Legal risks: Trademark and copyright issues are a big factor, and the misuse of tradmark-protected materials can have serious legal consequences. False advertising and the potential for security breches such as leaked confidential information can all make social media messy. 
  • PR risks: As seen with KFC, the power of the internet can mean that a simple faux pas can elevate into something much larger is a post goes viral. Your wrongdoing or untrustworthiness can be trending on various different sites in a matter of minutes.

The success of a social media campaign is difficult to calculate, and is subject to various different factors. However, the following may give indication as to how well your digital marketing is being received:-


  • Lack of consumer engagement: You may have upwards of 100,000 followers, but if your audience isn't engaging with the content then it isn't working. Any type of interaction with your followers, whether it be good or bad, is going to indicate the effectiveness.
  • Ignoring analytical tools: When marketing on a mass scale on social media, it is vital to have analytical tools that will help assess where and who with your campaign is most engaging. If not, your campaign will lack focus and direction. 
  • Action-gating: Not enough action-gating, that is to engage users by asking them to do something, is vitally important to keep your campaign present and in regular circulation. If you don't incite your potential customers to get involved, they will likely lose interest thick and fast.
KFC has since apologised to the disgruntled customer, and told the Daily Mail the following:

"We are really sorry about this. Clearly this ricebox was not served as it should have been and we are in contact with the customer to apologise". A spokesman continued to say that they are reminding restaurants of the correct way to serve their meals and "always want our customers to be happy with both the look and taste of their food". If all else fails, they could just try photographing their products realistically so that customers are aware of their substandard before purchasing. Just a thought.



SMF rookie, fresh out of academia, looking forward to more creative ventures. With a love of current affairs, green tea and an ever insatiable wanderlust, Katie is ready to have her voice heard. Follow her @KatieAtSMF


Contact us on Twitter, on Facebook, or leave your comments below. To find out about social media training or management why not take a look at our website for more info: TheSMFGroup.com
#KFC #Fail Proves #SocialMedia #Marketing is Both a Blessing and a Curse Reviewed by Katie Gascoyne on Sunday, October 11, 2015 Rating: 5

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