Cheesegate -- the now legendary (yesterday it was only "soon-to-be-legendary") 45-Day Cheese Tweet holocaust -- is now turning into a Marx Brothers farce.
Everyone involved is tripping in their underwear trying to claim that the story in Business Insider was either false, sensationalistic, or no big deal. Anyone who even touched this thing looks like an idiot (fortunately, I'm already officially recognized as an idiot, so WTF.)
Social media has once again proven that companies wading into it are as likely to get covered in poop as glory. The agency responsible for this mess is now in full-blown damage control mode.
First, they got someone at Digiday to write an apologia claiming that Business Insider got the story all wrong.
The lead in the Digiday story went like this
"When cynicism about corporate social media accounts meets the click-hungry Web, we end up with stories like this one..."Cynicism? Not only was the Business Insider story not cynical, it was one of the most jaw-droppingly naive and wide-eyed PR softballs ever served up to a bunch of nitwits.
If anything is cynical, it's Digiday's bitch fight with BI. First, they are apparently all light-headed and stricken with the vapors because an online site engaged in click baiting. Someone call the integrity police.
Then their article notes that the original BI story implied that 13 people were at some meeting but in reality only 4 people attended it. Big fucking deal. They use this trivial error try to undermine the credibility of the whole story.
According to Digiday, a VP at the agency said...
“Business Insider tore a page from the British tabloids, and it reflected a lot of the cynicism that people have about social media,” she said. “We can all agree it does not take 45 days to write a tweet.”Really? Then tell us clearly, exactly how long did this thing take? You want to discredit the story, be specific. According to one of your agency people "about one-third of (the agency's) social-media posts are planned in this fashion..." Is he full of shit or is the reporter? Or are you?
But the icing on this dung-cake is the way the agency has handled it. First, they foolishly invited a reporter into the clown act that is a social media "war room" hoping they would get a little PR treasure. Instead, they got a turd sandwich.
Now they're social media-ing their little tushies off trying to de-fuse the story. Here are a couple of examples:
- 45 billable days
- a copywriter and graphic designer to brainstorm tweet ideas
- a pitch team meeting with a social media expert, a copywriter, a designer team, and a project manager.
- an internal review, where senior copywriters and strategists sign off on the work over the course of a week