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Mother’s Day social campaign has mixed results

A Mum’s Day tie-in campaign on social media by a book publisher has received a somewhat mixed reception, with the campaign hashtag quickly adopted for less than motherly reasons.

Eager to mark Mothering Sunday, publisher Penguin launched the  campaign last week with the hashtag #YourMum.

Regrettably, while the intention to celebrate mums throughout the country was clear, the use of ‘Your Mum’ as a rather traditional playground insult came to the fore – and it came rapidly.

@DomHorton took to Twitter, for example, posting:

“Your mum is so hairy even Dora can’t explorer #YourMum”

Meanwhile, @thisisyourlaugh tweeted:

“#Yourmum is so stupid when she heard 90% of all crimes occur around the home, she moved house”

Other, more offensive tweets were also lighting up newsfeeds, of course. By Sunday, tens of thousands had tweeted similar missives.

However, though many would say this is just another example of failing a digital strategy on social media, many have said the opposite is true.

Meanwhile, the BBC revealed that even stranger goings-on had occurred with Jennifer Cowie, a former Penguin employee, taking credit for the plan.

She said:

“There was a team brainstorm […] I called it #YourMum as a work in progress title to indicate that the campaign name should be a bit odd and provocative.”

She went on to say that she was not even sure the ‘Your Mum’ label would stay, but said she left the company suddenly so had no further involvement.

She went on to claim that it is unlikely her former employer would be too upset, saying:

“All publicity is good publicity.”

This seemed to be confirmed by Penguin’s own response, as it tweeted:

“Thanks for pointing our #YourMum has an alternative meaning you guys! Now back to the books…”

There has been no information given regarding how successful the campaign has been – or just why Jennifer Cowie left so suddenly.

Steven Morris

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