Thursday, November 4, 2010

Astroturfing 2010

Is it right, and is it effective, for companies to tilt the conversations taking place in social media and use its employees as its online cheerleaders?
Is it cheating when companies hire interns to post positive reviews about their products online?

Will the shill and the lack of transparency come back to bite? There’s a term for it now – called ‘Astroturfing ' -- the brand of synthetic grass designed to look like natural grass.

Like those FOX News pumped tea party events that became news when covered.

Using employees as brand evangelists and cheerleaders should be any brand’s first step online – after all, if your own people don’t like your brand or not display that liking, why would others? But, there is a way to do it…to make it seem transparent and meaningful.

There are some big boys who don't play by these rules. In politics, it's business as usual, but in business and brand building it is not.

It is still advisable that before starting any online engagement , key decision makers should understand the broad internet usage patterns within the organization. and create customized employee guideline for social media usage that aim to explain the use of meaningful, transparent outreach on behalf of their brand/employer and repercussions of not doing so. More at Traal

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