The presidential election season is upon us and boy, is it a doozy. Political discourse is running rampant through the media. Unfortunately, there’s no escaping it in your personal life, but it’s shocking to see a number of businesses jumping in and getting political in posts on social media. Unless your business IS politics, this is a huge no no.
We get it. There’s a new, entertaining political story every day and a number of trending hashtags constantly popping up on Twitter. While we normally advise our clients to follow and discuss the latest topics and trends, that’s not true in this case. Just like religion and sex, politics is a topic to always avoid on corporate social media and in any other type of corporate setting. The subject matter is too personal and making your opinion known could harm your business.
Social media suicide
Sure you might receive more views or clicks on controversial political posts, but how many of those readers are you going to anger or offend? This won’t just cause you to lose followers; a company that shares a specific political view is also leaving itself wide open to some serious social media backlash that will fill your social feeds with negative comments. Worse yet, your political leanings could cause you to ultimately lose business opportunities and existing clients.
Still not convinced? Take a look at this post on LinkedIn from a journalist that asks the question: Does Political Rhetoric Belong on LinkedIn?
So whether you #feelthebern, ride the #trumptrain or want to shout from the rooftops #imwithher, don’t do it. Just don’t. Avoid the amusing, yet potentially offensive, memes and video compilations. And don’t even comment on someone else’s political post. It might be hilarious to you, but with so many emotions and opinions in politics, it’s never worth the risk on a corporate level.
Instead, leave all of that controversial political commentary to your personal accounts. Or better yet, our advice would be to avoid it all together, especially if you hold a high profile position or own a business. A lesson this Seattle business owner learned the hard way.
Image via Flickr (DonkeyHotey).