Commemorations of 9/11 are just around the corner. Expect many brands and organizations to find some way to mark the 10th anniversary of the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks—and expect many of these linkages to be inappropriate. It'll just be too easy to be accused of ghoulish exploitation.
The temptation will be great for brands to use the anniversary in some way to spike engagement on Facebook or increase their Twitters followers. But this anniversary will come just once, and it is uncharted waters. Chances are that seemingly guileless requests to share feelings or memories on a brand page will lead to heavy criticism.
The best route may be to fall totally silent on social networks on the morning of Tues., Sept. 13—a symbolic anniversary of the attacks—during the hour in which the attacks took place. Sept. 11 falls on a Sunday, and the attack was on a Tuesday. Some kind of message should be made by brands, and silent commemoration would be the best statement of all.