The job of the social media manager is, surely, to create effective engagement, not just to stimulate any kind of publicity. With (yet another) alleged PR disaster in the wake of Qantas awarding free flights to Wallaby fans who showed the best support for their Rugby heroes (great fighting performance from the Green and Gold btw!) – we see a lack of strategic vision and alarming inability to predict the likely stakeholder response. First up, Qantas was begging for a visual response to their competition, right? (Pix are best for immediate social media engagement, after all?) And the average ‘fan’ isn’t an especially seasoned communicator either, right? And any comp entry needs to be kinda ‘silly’ or ‘irreverent’ to get people buzzing about the Qantas comp too. Put these factors together, and the kind of content responses likely to be received were always likely to belong to the lowest common denominator bracket? So, what players in the squad look different, unique, outstanding? The bro’ with the ‘fro or the other with the dyed blonde doo are easy picks. Does ownership of this little bungle belong with Qantas or with the two ‘zany’ blokes who blacked-up to win some free flights and game tickets? PR disaster – hardly! Lack of joined up thinking over a half-baked social media initiative and the likely public response – absolutely. (Hat tip to The Age).