Experts & Insiders 3/8/2011

E&I: What Can Charlie Sheen’s Problems Teach Us About Social Media?

BBPR - Targeted Lifestyle Communications

E&I: What Can Charlie Sheen’s Problems Teach Us About Social Media?

By Bill Byrne

Charlie Sheen is hot in the news right now.  I’m not going to comment on his situation besides to say I hope things turn out for the best for all involved.

That being said, there is a marketing lesson to be learned here, social media to be specific, and it involves Charlie’s “Two and a Half Men” co-star, Jon Cryer.

Regardless of if you’re a consumer brand or simply have some level of celebrity, it’s important to squat your profile on the major (and minor actually) social networks.  This also means, that if you’re more famous than the average person, say pro skateboarder or locally known chef, you should start a Fan page on Facebook so people who aren’t your “friends” can still interact with you and you don’t have to worry about them peering into your deepest secrets or offending them by not accepting them into your friendship circle.

We’re not saying that you have to (or should) be active.  BBPR has a Facebook page that’s inactive (for various reasons we’ll discuss later – such as we’re a B2B service and I prefer not to ask my “friends” to become a fan of it, then “hide” my posts anyway), but it’s mine for BBPR regardless.  And having it helps keep confusion to a minimum about if what you’re seeing there is coming from this agency/its clients or another firm.  But even if you’re not active on Facebook or don’t want to be active in social media at all, it’s better to squat and leave a “we’re not here” message than let someone else become the official face of your brand/personality.

If John Cryer had setup an official Twitter account, his PR person probably wouldn’t have had to issue a statement.