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Old Spice was the laughing stock of Social Media Week New York when I showed this horrific photo from their lameass Residue is Evil campaign. Time Warner was close behind on the lousy campaign laugh meter.
As I noted back in August 2009:

“Ok, I’m not a 18 to 25 year-old man, so I’m not the demographic for the Old Spice Deodorant’s Swagger contest. Nonetheless, I’ve never seen a more confused, obtuse, badly designed contest than the one that starts on this annoying page and gets weirder and harder to use from there. They’ve included their slickly produced commercials as examples, which rather, umm, stinks.”

This disturbing photo is what remains of that horrid campaign
Showing it won the votes of the 200 or so people who gathered during Social Media Week New York at SUXORZ to choose the Worst Social Media Campaign of 2009 with me, Henry Copeland, Ian Schafer, Steve Hall, and Carolyn McCarthy
Fully disclosed stupidity
The Old Spice campaign is an example of the “fully disclosed stupidity” that now abounds in social media campaigns, wrote Henry Copeland, founder of Blogads, which sponsors the annual SUXORZ events. Derision and sheer disgust at this campaign should tell Old Spice that it’s time to get creative.
Time Warner Doesn’t Twit
The other example that won me a round for a worst campaign example was Time Warner’s my explanation of Time Warner’s horrific service. Failing to monitor their brand in social media caused long-term damage to the brand.
A senior customer service person at Time Warner told me, “Time Warner doesn’t Twit” when I noted that I was tracking my customer experience on Twitter. But guess what? Time Warner is advertising for a social media manager. So maybe they’ve woken up at last to the need to listen and learn from customers.
The Time Warner job ad says:

“This individual must understand the online marketing space and how social media is interwoven into that space. They must be able to identify and communicate social media opportunities and create materials in support of our stated social media strategy which his to ‘Connect consumers and influencers with information, support, entertainment and each other.
We want to empower consumers and customers to engage with the brand”

As Henry noted, no sentient being who works in marketing can possibly fail to understand that social media is now essential to every company’s relationship with customers.