If in doubt don’t shout it out

With online media today it is so easy to get it so wrong.

You may see a tweet or a link to an article and think you should share it to add value to your “brand” and provide interest to your audience. STOP! You MUST, MUST make sure you FACT CHECK FIRST. Is the information actually credible, true and helpful?

Social Media is a great source of news and a lot of people take the information shared at face value. But as a business or a “brand” you must make sure that you have your facts straight before you share them.

I have the rule: if in doubt don’t shout it out.

This came true very recently when thousands of coasties were left stranded on the Whangaparaoa Peninsula due to a tragic traffic accident. As people were sitting in their cars they were jumping on social media platforms to find out why the traffic was backed up. Checking all the updates from leading news sources, one piece of advice from Auckland Transport and NZTA was to head back up the peninsula and jump on the ferry to work.

Those that thought this was a great alternative way to get into town, headed down to the ferry to do just that. You can imagine the frustration they felt when upon getting to the ferry there was no service. Why? Because the Captain of the ferry was stuck on the other side of the crash and couldn’t get to his boat.

Leading authorities and news sources should have checked that ferry services were up and running before trying to send hundreds of people to the end of the peninsula to catch a boat going nowhere.

What have the news and transport “brands” now instilled in those who took their ferry ride advice? Mistrust. We cannot trust those tweets from that service because they so truly got it wrong. Yes it was an accident. Of course you would expect the ferry to be working but wouldn’t you want to check first before making a public announcement?

This is why getting your facts correct is so important because your “brand” is on the line.

Take a few minutes to check your sources before you post and share information. Some businesses have learnt the hard way. Dont be one of those.

Remember: if in doubt don’t shout it out.

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