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There are some foods you'll always associate with your childhood. E.L. Fudge cookies is one of those for me, so you can imagine my surprise when this tweet came up in my timeline.

Was it a mistake? An intern gone rogue? A Fig Newton hack? No,  it was promoted. Gasp. Ernie Keebler just tweeted "WTF." Sure, he's pretending it's "Where's the Fudge", but that's not where my mind went. Who knew this little elf had it in him?

Which brings us to content strategy on social media. There's an unspoken rule that brands tend to have more leeway on social. They can push boundaries, talk more frequently and have more fun. With all this creative content floating out there, they're also forced to find new ways to break through the clutter. Often, content creation becomes a balancing act between creating engagement and staying on brand.

I'm not saying Ernie crossed the line, but I am saying the elf I once knew, would never have said such a thing.Maybe that’s the point. Keebler sales could be down and they could be targeting angsty tweens. If that's the case, this post makes total sense.

To find your balance, I recommend asking yourself these questions:

  • What are the guard rails for my brand on social? How far am I willing to go?
  • Is this relevant to my target audience or am I talking to people who will never buy my product?
  • How does this piece of content help me achieve my larger marketing objectives?

Don't get me wrong, not every post is meant to drive sales. It’s okay to poke fun and entertain. That’s part of what makes social, social, but it is a good reminder that social media is ultimately an extension of your larger marketing plan. If you treat social as a stand alone activity too often you may find yourself quickly saying “FML”.