Very rarely do I comment on the writings of others in the marketing industry. This may be one of the first in the history of my blog (ok it’s not that long a history, but still). Then again, it’s very rare that I feel a piece that is equally as insightful as it is well written and even entertaining, all at the same time. I have to give my colleague Kevin Ryan kudos for an article in Search Engine Watch today (apparently a rebuttal to an earlier story by another author), which accomplishes this rare feat.
I have to admit, I have heard it referenced once before, but I wasn’t familiar with John Gabriel’s Greater Internet F*ckwad Theory. Basically his theory is quite hilariously (or sadly, depending on your outlook) accurate in many instances, and it goes a little something like this:
“Normal Person + Anonymity + Audience = Total F*ckwad”
So – what does this have to do with digital marketing?
Well, in the context of social media, it is indicative of the type of personality that can crash the the online conversational party with other consumers and ruin it. It is yet another reason to monitor social and blog activity, and to ensure that your business provides good service and is transparent, and minimizes the potential of turning a normal customer who has received a less than optimal brand experience into a proverbial f*ckwad.
Commit to being committed to monitoring the ecosystem, develop a plan on how to deal with each broad type of situation. Plan for scenarios. F*ckwad-proof your business.