As a business owner, should hot topics be used to further company agenda? #Firstworldproblems is a hashtag that frequents social media networks and is used by individuals to express daily frustrations. Often times these frustrations are things that most would consider a blessing. For example(these are actual tweets): “I hate when my mint gum makes my water too cold #firstworldproblems #brat” or “There isn’t a Starbucks near my office, so I have to drink Saxbys like some sort of third world laborer.” or “My show is so clean it’s slippery.” You get the point. These frustrations are about trivial things that some individuals in other countries would love to experience.
Water is Life is an organization whose mission is to bring clean water to those in need. One country they bring water programs to is Haiti. Water is Life recently released a video campaign to bring awareness to those who do not have access to clean drinking water. They did this by making a video of Haitians reading some of the #firstworldproblems hashtags. As you watch the video, you can see the disgust and disbelief on some people’s faces. Water is Life stated that the video was made to spread awareness about clean water and to eliminate the #firstworldproblems hashtag.
I watched the video and I am on the fence. I think if the organizaton stated that the purpose was to eliminate the hashtag, I would understand, but I did not see the correlation to the video and bringing awareness to the need for clean drinking water. If maybe the hashtag examples used had something to do with water, I think it would have made more sense to me. I understand the organizaton’s agenda and it was smart to use a hot topic, because I am sure more people are aware of their organization; I know I am. In this case, the ad campaign was more so bringing awareness to Water is Life, which in turn brings awareness to access to clean water. Which (thinking aloud) means they did succeed in their campaign. Twitter is talking about it, I’m talking about it, so mission accomplished.
What do you think? Is it okay to twist and turn hot topics to further your company agenda?
An urban planning PhD student finding peace in creating a balance between the mind, body, soul, & environment.