Insights & News

Is Your Brand Consistent Enough To Handle A Twitter Hack?

Brand HackedLast week, the AP Twitter account was hacked due to a sophisticated phishing scheme. Within seconds, the Dow Jones crashed for a brief moment. The account was suspended quickly.

The AP is nothing if not consistent. After all, they created the AP Stylebook, and they follow their own rules to the letter. So when this message was Tweeted by @AP people immediately suspected a hack:

AP Twitter Hack

Why did people suspect the post was a Twitter hack?

  • AP writes BREAKING in all caps
  • AP would not capitalize the word explosion
  • AP refers to the president as Obama or President Obama
  • There was no period at the end of the Tweet

Because the Tweet was not consistent with AP’s other communications, the truth became evident very quickly.

How consistent is your brand?

Your brand may never be hacked online, but this incident serves as a good reminder that consistency in communications is important. Here is a brief list of some quick items you can evaluate to ensure your brand is practicing consistency:


  • Do you have formal messaging?
  • Is your messaging clear and succinct?
  • Do all your employees communicate the same messages?
    • To the media?
    • At networking events?
    • In the elevator?
    • Online?


  • Do you use your corporate logo, color palette and font consistently across channels?
  • Do you possess and use a consistent corporate tone?
  • Do you execute a consistent writing style?
  • Does your messaging shine through in all your communications, including real-time communications?


  • Can the media count on you to respond to inquiries quickly?
  • If you participate in social networking, can your followers expect frequent updates and real-time replies?
  • Do you have an on-brand crisis plan you could execute swiftly?

What would you add to this list? Tell us in the comments!