Two major American companies are learning hard lessons about how they should manage their social media channels with regard to politics.
The first major social media failure in the wake of the election of Donald Trump as President elect of the United States was New Balance, a company that often remarks that its tennis shoes are proudly made by American workers.
New Balance took a lot of heat from posting its support of Trump’s trade and economic proposals, which will ostensibly get rid of existing trade agreements such as NAFTA and CAFTA. Customers reacted swiftly to these comments with photos and videos of New Balance shoes being burned, thrown in the garbage and flushed down the toilet.
On the other side of the political spectrum, food delivery service and mobile app GrubHub also suffered a social media incident after an email sent to employees was interpreted as an invitation to Trump supporters to leave the company. GrubHub CEO Matt Maloney wrote about his disgust with certain aspects of the Trump campaign. In the letter, he invited employees to send a resignation letter if they felt like practicing the ideology behind some of the most shameful moments of the Trump campaign.
Both GrubHub and New Balance made the right business decisions and took to social media to clarify their positions and political views. The message communicated by both companies was that they welcome customers and employees whose opinions may be different than those of the executive board.