This article was originally published on Social Media Overflow in 2011
When recovering from an avalanche of bad media coverage like Qantas did after their October worker union strikes, perhaps you shouldn’t make a Twitter contest about what your dream experience with them would be like. Qantas held a contest that asked its followers to tell them
What is your dream luxury inflight experience? (Be creative!) Answer must include #QantasLuxury. TCs t.co/WDTO0FKG
The prize pack was a First Class gift pack featuring a luxury amenity kit and Qantas branded pyjamas. The hashtag went viral with up to 51 sarcastic tweets per minute pouring in within hours of the post. This sort of contest would have probably run smoothly if offered by a different airline / offered at a time when the company wasn’t in such hot water with the general public. In theory, the idea of trying to promote the positives of your company sounds like a good way to try and earn back some respect, but when there is a chance of people turning it around like what happened this time, perhaps it’s better to lay low and let the heat of your recent problems cool down. The social media manager in charge of this campaign must be feeling pretty awkward right now. They were probably told to think up some new contest to try and raise morale about the company and probably had no idea the contest would take the direction it did. It is a good thing the contest is based on the quality of the posts, not random or else someone with a joke comment could have won which would have been even more embarrassing.