Is there a risk in having a Social Media ‘Star’?

by Lee Hopkins on October 5, 2009 · 12 comments

in blogging,customer service,ethics,housekeeping,legal,marketing,micro-blogging,podcasting,pr,second life & 3d virtual worlds,tools,video

isabella-new-blue-outfit-2009-edit

A fascinating discussion is happening over on Mark Schaefer’s BusinessesGrow blog, asking ‘What risk is there if the person who blogs or twitters for you becomes bigger than the brand?’

Put another way, if the social media celebrity who is your brand’s spokesperson leaves the company (or moves out of that role) is the company at risk?

There are a whole lot of very fine minds discussing this, looking at issues such as:

  • who created the twitter profile, the person or the company?
  • does the company ‘own’ the tweets that the star writes?
  • what happens when your ‘star’ is poached by a competitor and becomes their ‘star’?
  • do you have honesty and transparency across your channels, therefore ‘widgetWendy’ is actually run by a Wendy?
  • or do you have several anonymous, behind-the-scenes folks run the ‘widgetWendy’ ‘name’?
  • how can an ‘anonymous’ person run a vidblog, or should Darren replace Darren? (see the Mark’s post for the context behind this seemingly bizarre question)

These questions and a whole lot more…

What is marvellous is how posts like these can show that the ‘stars’ are listening.

@SharpieSusan - click on her nose to visit her twitter profile For example, the twitterer who runs the profile @SharpieSusan is actually a ‘Susan’ – the brand manager for Sharpie pens. She has a stack (sorry for the pun) of followers on twitter and she points them via her profile off to the Sharpie 1.0 and 2.0 sites.

Her name was mentioned during the discussion as one of the ‘stars’ – lo and behold not only does Susan join in the conversation, but so too does her manager and social media luminary Bert DuMars, the VP of E-Business & Interactive Marketing at Newell Rubbermaid.

This shows the power of ‘paying attention’ – brands and their managers can add to conversations and interact with the participants, becoming more ‘real’ and ‘top of mind’ at the same time.

And what about the questions above?
Go read Mark’s post for the answers
:-)


  • http://www.businessesgrow.com/blog Mark W Schaefer

    Lee. thanks so much for the nod and extending the depth of this conversation. I appreciate your commentary. I’ve added this post to my blog as recommended additional reading. The original post is still getting quite a bit of traffic. Thank you!

  • http://www.businessesgrow.com/blog Mark W Schaefer

    Lee. thanks so much for the nod and extending the depth of this conversation. I appreciate your commentary. I’ve added this post to my blog as recommended additional reading. The original post is still getting quite a bit of traffic. Thank you!

  • http://www.surveynew.com/ Mark W Schaefer

    Lee. thanks so much for the nod and extending the depth of this conversation. I appreciate your commentary. I’ve added this post to my blog as recommended additional reading. The original post is still getting quite a bit of traffic. Thank you!
    P.S. – Sorry, forgot to tell you great post!

  • http://www.surveynew.com/ Mark W Schaefer

    Lee. thanks so much for the nod and extending the depth of this conversation. I appreciate your commentary. I’ve added this post to my blog as recommended additional reading. The original post is still getting quite a bit of traffic. Thank you!
    P.S. – Sorry, forgot to tell you great post!

  • http://www.surveynew.com/ Mark W Schaefer

    Lee. thanks so much for the nod and extending the depth of this conversation. I appreciate your commentary. I’ve added this post to my blog as recommended additional reading. The original post is still getting quite a bit of traffic. Thank you!
    P.S. – Sorry, forgot to tell you great post!

  • http://www.holden.com.au/ Andrea Matthews

    Hi Lee

    This is one of the issues we have been mulling over at Holden as we move to integrate social media into our comms activity.

    GM in the US has a great model where the SM responsibility is shared across a team. This ensures that not only is the workload shared but also that a number of team members get the opportunity to gain experience and knowledge in this area.

    See twitter account @gmblogs to see the team in action!

  • http://www.holden.com.au Andrea Matthews

    Hi Lee

    This is one of the issues we have been mulling over at Holden as we move to integrate social media into our comms activity.

    GM in the US has a great model where the SM responsibility is shared across a team. This ensures that not only is the workload shared but also that a number of team members get the opportunity to gain experience and knowledge in this area.

    See twitter account @gmblogs to see the team in action!

  • Lee Hopkins

    G’day Andrea,

    Bob Lutz and the GM social media team’s activities are, quite naturally, legendary amongst those of us who have been around long enough to remember the excited commotion caused when Bob first started.

    I always wondered when Holden would ‘join the conversation’ and am heartened to see my Adelaidean colleagues like yourself now getting things moving.

    I know the PRIA here in Adelaide has organised an evening event where you are one of the speakers – perhaps we can find a moment to say hello to each other…

  • Lee Hopkins

    G’day Andrea,

    Bob Lutz and the GM social media team’s activities are, quite naturally, legendary amongst those of us who have been around long enough to remember the excited commotion caused when Bob first started.

    I always wondered when Holden would ‘join the conversation’ and am heartened to see my Adelaidean colleagues like yourself now getting things moving.

    I know the PRIA here in Adelaide has organised an evening event where you are one of the speakers – perhaps we can find a moment to say hello to each other…

  • http://www.holden.com.au/ Andrea Matthews

    Hi Lee

    Yes, I’m taking part in a panel discussion next week on the topic of internal comms. It will be great to meet face to face

    Andrea
    .-= Andrea Matthews´s last blog ..Holden Expands Cruze Line-Up Due to Popular Demand =-.

  • http://www.holden.com.au/ Andrea Matthews

    Hi Lee

    Yes, I’m taking part in a panel discussion next week on the topic of internal comms. It will be great to meet face to face

    Andrea
    .-= Andrea Matthews´s last blog ..Holden Expands Cruze Line-Up Due to Popular Demand =-.

  • http://www.holden.com.au Andrea Matthews

    Hi Lee

    Yes, I’m taking part in a panel discussion next week on the topic of internal comms. It will be great to meet face to face

    Andrea
    .-= Andrea Matthews´s last blog ..Holden Expands Cruze Line-Up Due to Popular Demand =-.

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