Mall of America's Social Strategy

Mall of AmericaPR Daily News reports on Mall of America's successful "newsjacking," or taking advantage of news stories to promote business. Being close to the Mineapolis-St. Paul International Airport gives the mall the chance to lure travelers to shop when their flight is delayed.

Last summer, the mall wrote a blog post, "Flight delayed? 11 things to do at MOA," offering better options than wandering aimlessly like Tom Hanks in "The Terminal." Like a lot of malls these days (what's left of them), Mall of America is part amusement park.

Through social listening, the mall is responsive, but they also promote timely events, such as the mall's 25th anniversary, and greet people who announced celebrations at the mall. We can see the potential for creepiness here, but management believes people appreciate this.

The mall has a bunch of people writing posts, and manager Timothy Pate lets them have their own voice: "Mall of America happens to have a lot of quirky stories, and we aren't afraid to share those with our readers. We find when you really let your quirks shine through, readership goes up."

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  • From Chapter 3 in the text or from your own research, how would you define social listening?
  • I mentioned the concern about "creepiness." Where should social media managers draw the line? What are some examples of overstepping?