Recently I wrote a post about a social brand, and someone from corporate left a comment on the post trying to prove me wrong by pretending to be a happy customer of that brand, rather than an employee. For a brand that has spent a ton of time, energy and resources on building its brand and social cred, this is really, really, very, very bad, dirty brand behavior. In a word: Grrrrr.
If there’s anyone reading this that doesn’t understand why this is bad behavior, which I doubt, it is simply the antithesis of being a good social citizen. The opposite of transparent, a blatant misrepresentation. To a brand that goes to great lengths to differentiate on good brand behavior – how well it treats its customers – this is a very good way to very quickly kill trust. In all honesty, I was considering becoming a customer, and I don’t think I can do so now, even though I recognize this is one individual of many.
I have sent multiple e-mails to this individual, to no avail. I could out this person, possibly getting him reprimanded or fired, and possibly damaging the reputation of the brand. Thanks to a consultation with the more-cool-headed @augieray, and @danamlewis and @philgerb, I have opted to continue pursuing other channels of conversation to stop this behavior before trying to draw a lot of attention to this individual/brand.
Perhaps, if you add your voices to mine in the comments, I can send a link and a message to this individual and convince them to stop. Thanks for your help.
P.S. if you are wondering what the heck the photo is, that would be Astroturf. This poor practice is called Astroturfing, and I find it amusing that I didn’t even know that until it happened here. Ha. Sometimes I wonder what planet I live on.
P.P.S. a little tip for any astroturfers or would-be astroturfers out there. When you comment, we can see the IP address so we know that it came from your corporate .com