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How Do You Feel About Social Media ‘Newsjacking?’

A recent article shared by Ragan Communications discusses brands posting in social media about news, holidays and anniversaries not related to the brand. This includes commenting on everything from national tragedies to wishing fans and followers a happy Fourth of July.

The author highlights examples of brands receiving extreme negative feedback when fans and followers felt the post was in poor taste – like using the Boston Marathon bombing to promote breakfast recipes.

He believes brands shouldn’t comment on news or holidays that do not relate to the brand, as no one wants their news stream clogged with unnecessary sympathies or well wishes – especially if they are promotional in nature. At best the post comes off as disingenuous and annoying, and at worst tacky and self-serving.

However, if it is national cookie day (Dec. 4), cookie brands should absolutely celebrate the occasion in social media. The author feels this type of post makes sense as the brand has a clear reason for highlighting and celebrating the holiday.

I have my opinion about “newsjacking” but I’d like to know how others feel about the phenomenon.

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