Posted by Jason Cowan 4 years, 1 month ago


Earlier in the week, Digiday came up with an article about how a number of brands were moving away from corporate language in favor of sounding like a teenybopper on social media. That’s right, you can go on Twitter to find brands such as Taco Bell, Burger King, Chili’s and Applebee’s using the words “bae” or “fleek” as hashtags. Fueling the trend of the usage of such words even further, Twitter accounts have been created to draw attention to brands that say bae. 

There can be a number of reasons for this shift in diction; brands are trying to target a younger audience or maybe they are desperately struggling to connect. And whether or not people agree with the usage of these informal words, it works in the end because people are talking about it. Brands are using this as an informal and uncharacteristic way to be personable with who they are trying to connect with.

This got me to thinking, though. Can unconventional communication techniques that intend to display how personable a brand is work in every case? That answer is no. But some try anyway.

For example, the NFL on ESPN Twitter account often tweets animated reactions to big plays during an NFL game. This does not work for a couple of reasons. Firstly, ESPN which is a news publication, should practice journalistic objectivity; many of the tweets are not neutral. Secondly, it is cringeworthy. I look to ESPN to report what is going on in the world of sports, I am not looking for a narration of events.

Social media is tricky. Some brands will be able to use “bae” and “fleek” while others will not be able to. You just need to determine whether the credibility you may sacrifice is worth the attention it will bring.

What do you think? 


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