Is Your Social Media Company Marketing Themselves on Your Dime?

Every day we here at Cosmetic Social Media see both good and bad examples of social media strategy. Today we’re sharing what we consider to be an abomination: taking a client’s money to promote one’s own agency.

To illustrate what we mean, let’s take a global brand like Audi. Here is a photo from Audi’s Facebook page. Notice that BBDO (Audi’s ad agency) has not put any mention of themselves anywhere in the photo. Which is right… why would Audi want to spend their marketing budget to promote BBDO?  BBDO has their own ad budget.

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Okay… now let’s say you are Dr. Marty McHiggnebottom with a cosmetic practice in White Plains, NY and you hire ABC Social to manage your social media presence. They tell you they are “experts” in the field, and since it’s all Greek to you, you figure they must be experts, or why else would they say it? Plus, they seem professional and trustworthy. But, did you know, Dr. McHiggenbottom, that ABC Social is using your posts to do a little free PR for themselves on your dime? After all, you are paying them some a fee to administer your Facebook page, right? So shouldn’t the posts be all about you and your target audience (or at least nothing about them!)?

Unfortunately, this is a social media FAIL that we see on a daily basis. And without drawing attention to the offending party, we’ll blur out their name, (as well as that of their poor unsuspecting client), just show you an example:

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Now, we want to point out a few things here:

  1. Even if the social media company took the picture themselves, they still should not use the client’s post as an opportunity for free advertising. Giving attribution to a photographer is one thing. Putting your company name on stock imagery for your own benefit is quite another.
  2. As much as we would like to say this is an isolated incidence, it is only one example of MANY we have found in the last week alone.
  3. A reputable social media company understands, and more importantly uses best social media practices, and knows to put the client (not themselves) first.

Remember the old adage, “Caveat Emptor”, (let the buyer beware)? Well… it has never been truer than right now in the social media space. Do your homework. Ask questions. Vet their work.

Questions? Just ask! Comments? Feel free to add them below!

by Monique Ramsey, Founder and Social Media Horticulturalist of Cosmetic Social Media