Don’t panic! Laugh it off.

Misjudged humour can often leave organisations with egg on their face(book). It may be that you didn’t realise something had a double meaning, your halo has never slipped – or it could be that you didn’t read your post back out loud before hitting publish.

There have been a few recent examples of people either knowingly publishing risqué content or innocently blushing and denying their knowledge of their content’s alternative connotations. With this in mind, when asked for a post on double entendres I thought I’d better give you one (ahem).

Pre-SuBo

Back in 2012, Susan Boyle’s social media team caused a seismic shift in the way people viewed hashtags (and Susan herself) with the hashtag
#susanalbumparty.

Closer inspection of the tweets by @IsTwitWrong revealed that the hashtag was spotted by her team and deleted, before being replaced with the more sober #SusanAlbumParty – although the capitalisation does nothing for the Twitter search it does help us read it as intended. What this incident proves is that nothing is ever truly deleted from the internet. If that tactic doesn’t work then we could always encourage our audiences to stop tittering and grow up.  

Your mum

Penguin Books’ social campaign for Mother’s Day was a fest of nostalgia, taking many people back to their schooldays. But this was not an overly sentimental, sepia-tinged idyll but a more crass callback to playground humour. The publisher’s innocent request to tweet for gift recommendations was somewhat sullied by their use of the hashtag #YourMum – the punchline to many a joke.

And jokes followed…

Penguin’s masterful responses and knowing tone suggested they knew exactly what they were doing with #YourMum. They knew it would trend and draw further attention to their campaign. Others still believe it was an accident that was well-handled and a social crisis averted.

What? It’s for storing bananas, obviously

Groupon admitted that they knew the suggestive Banana Bunker would be received well by their many Facebook fans and planned their responses well, making sure to reply to comments with a straight face. The result was their most popular post ever.

Groupon's Banana Bunker

 

Knowing what’s coming certainly lets us plan how to handle comments and make the most of the attention often drawn by risqué campaigns.

Steamy firefighters

London Fire Brigade capitalised on the building excitement ahead of the Fifty Shades of Grey release to share important messages about avoidable callouts.

Their tweets and Facebook posts made the most of image sizing to encourage curious followers to expand images and share excellently crafted content.

London Fire Brigade image of pedal cutters

While this is a risky tactic to employ for a public sector organisation LFB certainly managed to pull it off.

and let us know what you think

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