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Chase’s #AskJPM Twitter campaign implodes, abruptly ends

Chase invites Twitter users to a Q&A session that backfires in their face, and their response triggers a second backlash.

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Chase’s Twitter fail

What happens when one of the world’s largest brand takes to Twitter for an “ask anything” session? And what happens when that brand is a bank, which has been at the center of scandals and disservices to consumers? It backfires, that’s what.

In one of the year’s biggest Twitter fails, JPMorgan Chase launched their #AskJPM Twitter campaign, allowing anyone to submit questions and answers with Vice Chairman Jimmy Lee, and the session ended before its scheduled time as Twitter users’ responses were not only mean and snarky, but mocked the brand endlessly, flooding the web with anti-JPMorgan Chase rhetoric.

According Bloomberg, a JPMorgan spokesperson said that the Q&A aimed to give college students an opportunity to interact directly with a senior executive, but they got tweets that included “Is it true ‘JPM stands for ‘Just Pay More’?”; “Can I have my house back?”; “As a young sociopath, how can I succeed in finance?”; and “What is your favorite type of whale?” in reference to the London whale scandal.

And a second backfire

“#Badidea! Back to the drawing board,” the bank said just hours after soliciting questions via Twitter.

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And of course Twitter went bonkers over that message as well, and according to Topsy, over 6,000 responses were registered to just this one tweet. Ouch.

How to avoid a backlash of this nature

Look, let’s be honest – if your brand isn’t beloved, if you ask for involvement on Twitter, you’re going to attract the haters, or silence, neither of which is effective.

Chase is not being criticized for their backlash, but rather for canceling their scheduled Q&A, proving an unwillingness to listen, be it heated or honest. If you’re considering engaging online, don’t ask for honest input if you’re not looking for it, and if you’re targeting a specific demographic (like college students), be clear in who you are targeting and why.

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Written By

Marti Trewe reports on business and technology news, chasing his passion for helping entrepreneurs and small businesses to stay well informed in the fast paced 140-character world. Marti rarely sleeps and thrives on reader news tips, especially about startups and big moves in leadership.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Tinu

    November 18, 2013 at 10:49 pm

    Exactly. They could have met the heat head-on, and said “you know what, we did suck. And here’s how we’re going to try to un-suck ourselves.” Or baby stepped their way up to a Q and A with a good PR firm and some crisis management. Was really looking forward to seeing how they dealt with the flood of anger. And saddened to see that they tucked their tail between their legs and wandered off.

    A few thousand criticisms put together does not likely equal the anguish of One household that should not have lost their home. They had a platform on which they could answer for that, propose alternatives, make peace eventually. And they bailed. Very disappointing.

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