WHAT IS BRANDJACKING? Brandjacking is an activity whereby someone acquires or otherwise assumes the online identity of another entity for the purposes of acquiring that persons or businesss brand equity The term combines the notions of branding and hijacking, and has been used since at least 2007 when it appeared in a Business Week article The tactic is often associated with use of
TYPES OF BRANDJACKING1) Identityimpersonation Facebook and Twitter are breeding grounds for fake profiles impersonating celebrities and even regular people Done to gain personal information of users
TYPES OF BRANDJACKING2) Cyber-squatting When someone buys a URL (website address) in anticipation that youll want to buy it off them at some point in the future Buying up URLs in the names of new limited companies or extensions that existing successful organisations did not have the presence of forethought to secure (such as .org, .com, .co.uk, .net) can be very profitable Definitely considered to be immoral profiteering
TYPES OF BRANDJACKING3) Phishing Technical cat-burglars raid your database and glean personal or financial data that they can then use against you or your customers Biggest motive -> credit card information Secondary motive -> To steal passwords and access accounts Private information is
MOTIVE BEHIND BRANDJACKING A brandjacker may attempt to use the reputation of its target for: Free publicity to malign the reputation of its target “innovative marketing” The effects on the original brand-holder Financial loss Credibility loss
SOME HIGH PROFILE HIJACKINGS –BURGER KING Burger King’s official Twitter handle @BurgerKing was hijacked and adorned with McDonald’s• Apparently their password was “whopperr123” branding on• A faction of Anonymous claimed responsibility February 18• After more than an hour, the handle was suspended
SOME HIGH PROFILE HIJACKINGS –BP During the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010 the Twitter handle @BPGlobalPR gained a huge following – almost 10 times the number of followers of the official @BP_America account – and frequently parodied their response (and lack thereof) to the disaster.
8 STEPS TO PREVENT BRAND-JACKING Sign-up for leading social media sites, which includes all well-known sites along with the ones which apply especially to the Line-of- Business e.g. Media, Entertainment , Travel. List out all brand names that need to be protected – company name, product-names, characters, spokespersons, other IP and sign- up for user names using each of these brand names. Wherever possible, create user communities on a site.
8 STEPS TO PREVENT BRAND-JACKING Define the company department which is responsible for brand presence on Social Media and entrust them with active site-monitoring and creation and promotion of user communities around the brands. Engage customers, fans and users actively and positively on social media by having logos for approved fan sites, customer service sites and regular status updates. The goal is to create a sense of close-knit community to gain positive
8 STEPS TO PREVENT BRAND-JACKING Always plan for the future. All products, brand names, characters or other public names that affect the IP of the organization should be registered everywhere before they become public. Supervise employees who are using the brand names or other IP in social media to keep a positive image, avoid misleading acts, and ensure that the marketing and legal departments are always kept in the loop.
8 STEPS TO PREVENT BRAND-JACKING In case of an IP infringement, the fight to recover brand rights should be a low-key effort and the offender should be treated tactfully & facts should be validated extensively to prevent negative publicity and a potential PR disaster. Finally, the single most critical tip to prevent brand-jacking is “ETERNAL VIGILANCE” of the Intellectual Property on the Internet.
COMPANIES WHICH DID IT RIGHT -COKE Coke has the highest brand equity among all the companies world wide. Every year it spends billions of dollars in order to maintain its brand value According to the page data Coca Cola fan page is the second most popular page on Facebook with over 3.3 Million fans, only second to Barack Obama However, this page wasn’t created by Coke, but by two Coke fans in Los Angeles, Dusty Sorg and Michael Jedrzejewski. Instead of acting against brand jacking – the officials at coke contacted them to partner with coke to manage their page Facebook made the decision to either close the page or let Coca-Cola take it over. Coca- Cola instead proposed an alternative: Let the creators keep the page but share it with a few of Coca-Cola’s senior interactive folks…
PINSTAGRAM Some times brandjacking helps both the parties. One of the latest example for this is the new application that is created – Pinstagram Pinstagram is a hybrid application that is half social pinning site Pinterest, and half photo- sharing app Instagram The simple combination of the two apps has created an entirely new offering, while hijacking both brands. instagram gets downloads as people respond to its unique product, while Instagram and Pinterest receive more traffic as a result. “Pinstagram has jacked Pinterest and Instagram in a way that’s complicit with the other two. It’s a homage to the other brands, and it’s useful to both brands as it drives
HOW TO SURVIVE A BRAND HIJACK? Notifying our customers immediately Reporting the phishing site to the company hosting it Putting out a press release Well defined plan to help affected customers Proper communication within the organization Filing a report to the Internet Authority of the respective country
SHELL’S STORY Generally oil companies get targeted by environment activist groups such as Greenpeace Shell was also not spared Problem for Shell was such activist groups took over Shell’s social media space The fake pages started getting more attention than Shell’s original pages How did Shell react to this accusations against some oil spills? Analyzed the situation, by not allowing itself to be the center of trolls