What to Read Next

3 Social Media Lessons From Marco Rubio's Awkward Televised Water Grab

Dave Kerpen
14 February 2013
3 Social Media Lessons From Marco Rubio's Awkward Televised Water Grab

Here's what Poland Spring got right--and wrong--when its bottle landed in a viral video.

By now, you've probably seen the footage of Florida Senator Marco Rubio's bizarre water grab during his televised response, on behalf of Republicans, to Barack Obama's State of the Union Address.

What you may not know is how Rubio's water brand of choice, Poland Spring, reacted. After the awkward video of Rubio grabbing at a Poland Spring water bottle went viral, Poland Spring posted on Facebook the picture accompanying this article.

Any business can learn a few social media lessons from what Poland Spring did--and didn't do--since that unlikely moment in the spotlight:

1. You live in a real-time marketing world.

Two weeks ago it was Oreo at the Super Bowl blackout; now it's Poland Spring at the State of the Union. Soon there will be more opportunities at the Oscars. In today's fast-paced social-media world, events unfold faster and spread further than ever before, and your business needs to be able to join the conversation just as quickly.

2. You'll never know when your brand will be part of the conversation.

Imagine how many types of companies besides Poland Spring could've weighed in on the Rubio response: other water companies, water delivery services, fan and air-conditioning companies, and speaking coaches, to name just a few. No matter the size or type of your business, there are more and more opportunities to jump in on what happens at live events--especially big ones.

3. Be on as many social networks as your resources will allow.

For some reason, Poland Spring chose to only post its celebrity water bottle on Facebook. Imagine the following it could have garnered on other networks, especially Twitter, where the hashtag #watergrab became a trending topic. If you can build a culture where as many employees as possible are active on social media, when a chance presents itself, you'll be that much more ready to pounce.

It doesn't matter whether you are a huge corporate brand or a small business with only five employees. Social media gives anyone the ability to react and respond to live events--in a humorous, or clever way--within seconds. Make sure to use your resources wisely and involve everyone at your company--the best breaks are usually the least expected.

More from Inc.com:

Free Workshop in Washington DC Area, Feb. 27!

This workshop introduces you to the tools to create winning trades no matter which direction stocks move! Attend the event and get a FREE silver bar!

Drivers With No Tickets In 3 Years Must Read This

If you drive less than 50 miles per day, there is a way to pay less for auto insurance that few people realize. Are you overpaying?

Drivers With No Tickets In 3 Years Must Read This

United States drivers are surprised that they never knew this. If you drive less than 50 mi/day, you better read this...

Personal Loan Rates as low as 5.99% APR

$25,000 for $742/mo. 3 yr repayment, $0 down payment. No obligation quotes. Get up to 5 offers in minutes. Quotes are free! Start loan request now.

Drive part-time, full-time, or anytime with Uber!

As an Uber independent contractor you can get paid to drive your own car! We connect you with riders, and you work when you want to.

Got the Need for Speed?

Get on the fast track to a great career. Click here to learn more about training at MMI

Movie Hitlist

Do NOT pay your insurance until you try this.

If you drive less than 55 miles/day OR have no DUI's you can get auto insurance for as low as $29/ Month! See if you qualify.

Transfer Your Balance To A Better Credit Card

CreditCards.com makes it easy to compare the top ranked credit cards out there. Learn more about balance transfer credit cards here.

What Happens When a Harvard Engineer Gets Robbed?

He designs a smarter home security system—without contracts, installation fees or sneaky salesmen. Discover a smarter way to protect your home today.

How Older Men Tighten Their Skin

Men, reduce the look of wrinkles, sagging skin and fine lines with this affordable and effective skin tightening treatment without leaving your home.

Toddler tantrum email series for moms

We get it. We’ve been there. Sign up for our email track for advice on how to handle different situations that may arise with your little one.

Banks Are Worried Homeowners Will Do This.

Homeowners are surprised and furious. If you owe less than $625,000 on your home, you better read this.

Auto Glass Repair VA/MD/DC

We Come to You Same Day Service. All Insurance Accepted Top Quality.

Bad News For Insurance, Great News For Virginia

Virginia drivers, with cars and good driving records are learning that they may qualify for lower car insurance rates. Do you qualify?