1. Snapchat – Offensive Ad on Rihanna
It has been a difficult year for Snapchat. First Kylie Jenner asked her 25 million Twitter followers “Does anyone else not open Snapchat anymore?” which resulted in the company losing $1.3 billion in value, and then this Rihanna ad was shown to users on Snapchat:
The ad leveraging the domestic violence experience between Rihanna and Chris Brown was created by a (bad taste) game company and auto fed onto the Snapchat platform.
Rihanna condemned the ad and blamed Snapchat for not being responsible in reviewing content on its platform.
The ad was brought down, but by that time the company had already lost close to 5% of its stock value.
How does a marketer protect itself from retargeted ads? We are not sure.
2. Lockheed Martin – Twitter Backlash
Lockheed Martin, the biggest weapons manufacturer in the world, thought it will be cool to do a User Generated Activity and hence asked users to send pictures on World Photo Day. This is what it tweeted out:
What they got in return were pictures of bombs used to destroy a school in Yemen, images of bloodied backpacks and other gruesome images of the horrors of war.
While the company quickly deleted the tweet, the damage had already been done. I still don’t understand what was it that Lockheed Martin wanted to achieve from a campaign like this.
3. Burger King Russia – Marketing Failure
To ride on the popularity of FIFA World Cup, Burger King Russia started a promotional campaign tweeted this:
As you can clearly see how demeaning and sexist this campaign is, it has got the rating of worst marketing fail ever in Russia.
Burger King quickly removed all the promotional material from its sites as well as outdoor, but by then, the damage had already been done.