First, it was Beyoncé who released a series of photos to provide damage control after the infamous elevator fight between her sister Solange and her husband JAY Z. And last Saturday morning, Usher posted a photo of he and his protege Justin Bieber — expressing his sentiments regarding the release of footage from five years ago. (If you want to see want Justin said, you’re more than welcome to search Google or TMZ.)
But I find it absolutely fascinating how celebrities, and even some brands, are taking advantage of the immediacy of social media as a way to respond to controversy. While I believe there is still power in the press release, social media has made it much more efficient for PR pros to communicate with their audiences effectively. Usher may have dodged TMZ cameras when asked about his thoughts on Justin Bieber’s racially charged comments, but perhaps waiting to release his thoughts on a medium he’s comfortable was best.
As social media continues to evolve, brands and organizations will always strive to be personable, relatable and helpful to their constituents. What makes Instagram so great is that it combines the visual element, but bit still provides leverage for conversation to take place. With the use of hashtags and connection to Twitter, Facebook and Tumblr, users have the chance to share their content far and wide. I think what many social media nerds like myself are anticipating is HOW can we measure the outcomes of the content that we share? Sure, double-tap love and comments are great, but will Instagram ever create an algorithm that will measure the effectiveness of users posts? Even with “sponsored” posts, there has to be a way in which companies and brands are able to measure their influence on such a popular marketing medium.
I suppose only time will tell. But until then, I guess we will all just continue to “flex on The Gram” in order to strengthen our own personal brands, and provide instantaneous crisis management. 😉