Sometimes you know it is going to be one of those kinds of days. You can't find the right clothes to put on. Your team lost the big game the night before. Or you were up all night with a crying baby. The night passes, you wake up the next morning and you're cranky. We all have days like this – and maybe we fight that crankiness with a slightly larger morning cup of coffee. Or by wasting an hour or two surfing around on YouTube instead of working. Cranky is a state of mind, and when you can get enough time passing – you can generally get over it.
If you happen to have a job that requires you to use social media to engage people online though, cranky can turn into a big problem. If you blog when you're cranky, you end up being "snarky." If you tweet when you're cranky, you end up ranting. Even if your crank-inspired snarks and rants are fun to read for a few moments … that moment is fleeting. Yet while the moment passes quickly, the content remains online forever (or until some freedom-hating supervillian finally perfects a world altering electromagnetic weapon to kill all previously published content on the Internet).
Supervillians aside, the point is that getting cranky online can stick with you for much longer than you imagined it would. And if you engage socially online on behalf of a brand, it can be taken far out of context and cause problems you never anticipated. So amidst the advice you may be reading online about what to blog about and worrying about how to craft the ideal social media strategy to engage your customers, don't forget the most important lesson of all: if you're feeling a bit cranky, skip the blogging or tweeting and just find a few more YouTube videos to watch until you feel better.
PS – I am not cranky (today).