Controversial businesses – take care on Twitter

The Ask Our Owls promotion for Holland and BarrettA cautionary tale

Holland And Barrett’s #AskOurOwls Twitter promotion.

It started like this:

Unfortunately (for the company) there are a lot of people who think that promoting homeopathic remedies and vitamin supplements is wrong; will lead to more illness as people shun conventional, tested, medecines, etc.  So – the comments began rolling in:

Phew – that’s not good!

Of course, a lot of the people tweeting the ‘unhelpful’ questions were galvanised by social media itself. Authors who rail against pseudoscience and the dangers of some alternative medicines sent tweets seen by thousands of their followers.

Follow the unfolding drama here!

The lesson?

I imagine in a courtroom, a barrister doesn’t ask a question unless he’s pretty sure what the answer is going to be.  Perhaps that’s what we should do on Social Media when we promote open questions like this?

Being an ‘open’ business is good. Creating an ‘open goal’, not so much!


  1. Steven194 says:

    Hello there, You’ve performed a great job. I’ll certainly digg it and personally recommend to my friends. I am sure they will be benefited from this web site.


  1. […] are blogs here, here and here discussing this monumental clusterf*** of a campaign which will surely […]

  2. […] was launched on 9 June complete with one of these Twitter things #askourowls, thus providing, as this blogger put it,  an open goal. It was a sweet opportunity for the well-organised and gobby skeptics, who […]


By continuing to use the site, you agree to the use of cookies. more information

The cookie settings on this website are set to "allow cookies" to give you the best browsing experience possible. If you continue to use this website without changing your cookie settings or you click "Accept" below then you are consenting to this.