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WHO'S DOING YOUR PR WITHOUT YOU EVEN KNOWING?

Who is doing your PR on You Tube without you even knowing?
Famously, United Airlines' stock price fell 10%, costing stockholders about $180 million in value when Canadian musician Dave Carroll published his song 'United Breaks Guitars' on YouTube. "That couldn't happen to us" you might say, but our experience proves that something similar could.

It's no revelation to learn that You Tube is now the second largest search engine, but what many companies may not realise is that through the proliferation of social media, their businesses or products could be on it without them even knowing. What's more, it might not be the kind of publicity that they want. So what should they do about it?

Social media can certainly be a good tool if you're a consumer getting nowhere with large organisations. That's why many companies are throwing vast resources at monitoring platforms such as Twitter enabling them to address issues. Some are now spending more on that, than they are spending on their helplines.

Unfortunately, it doesn't stop there. Here are just a few real-life examples experienced by companies we have worked with:

A while ago we were filming employee training resources for a client and discovered that disgruntled employees (or ex-employees) were anonymously uploading video content to You Tube about the company. Not surprisingly, the nature of the content generated unfavourable feedback. In some cases the comments were rude and used offensive language. Whilst it's possible to complain to You Tube, there's no guarantee that it will be removed or that more will not follow later. Thankfully we were on hand, to produce a far more positive alternative, so that when search words were entered, the official video could be watched.

In a different situation, one of our clients for whom we produce product adverts, was having uncontrolled product reviews uploaded. We're glad to say they were not negative but another client was having its product falsely rubbished (it's suspected by a competitor) as being dangerous. Again, it was good strategy to have an alternative positive promotion that could be searched through You Tube.

The hospitality market, medium and smaller hotels in particular, often think they don't need such promotional tools but if a guest has a bad experience there's a good chance that the i-phone will come out and within minutes it can be on You Tube, embedded into Twitter, Facebook and all the others.

So what should you do? In our view there are three (maybe four) things you can act upon, straight away.

1/ Search social media platforms to see if anyone is posting information about your business or products without your knowledge. If you find some that you consider being false or misrepresented, contact the provider to enquire whether it can be taken down. You might have only limited success.

2/ Monitor or better still, understand and approve the comments that others make when you upload posts on your own platforms. E.g. Alongside one of our posts on G+ somebody used it to covertly advertise 'adult videos' using a terminology that's predominantly only understood by those involved in that sector.

3/ Don't wait for negative PR to go online that could do you harm. Have your own positive content on YouTube before someone else gets in. Furthermore, use it to let people know how good you are.

4/ Don't 'break guitars' in the first instance but if you, own up, appologise, fix the problem and the cause!

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If you would like help creating a positive video promotion about your business or adverts for your products, why not give CorpFilms [UK] a call? It's what we're known for. It's what we do well..

CorpFilms [UK] specialises in 'high-end' corporate film production. * Company Promotions * Web and Point of Sale adverts * Training, Employee Inductions and e-Learning * Product 'How to' User Guides & Demonstrations * Live Events and Award Ceremonies * Interactive Interviews
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