Launching a hashtag to promote your brand often provides great potential to expand your reach, connect with fans, and use the power of the masses to help build up reputation. But as Ottawa’s Carleton University found out today, it also provides rife opportunity for subversion.
The school launched a new public awareness campaign this morning to celebrate its 75th anniversary, that follows the theme “Distinctly Carleton.”
As part of the launch, Carleton revealed a new website (as well as a special campaign page) and unveiled massive portraits of famous alumni like former Prime Minister Lester B. Pearson, writer Lynn Coady, journalist Nahlah Ayed, and Ravens basketball star Philip Scrubb, among others.
Part of the launch also included a hashtag campaign.
Save the Date for #DistinctlyCarleton! Oct. 15 at 10 a.m. River Building Atrium #ottnews pic.twitter.com/PLDMz5NwuJ
— Carleton U News (@CUnewsroom) October 8, 2014
It didn’t take long for students and faculty to give the hashtag an entirely different meaning.
Bullying students #DistinctlyCarleton
— Lauren Montgomery (@LO_montgomery) October 15, 2014
Destroying a community garden? That’s #DistinctlyCarleton
— Kelly B (@K_elly_B) October 15, 2014
Spending a gazillion dollars to restart a football team while cutting departmental budgets (not Sprott of course) #DistinctlyCarleton
— Christian Belisle (@Crizco91) October 15, 2014