How Your Business Can Manage a Crisis on Social Media

Photo credit: @jujublack7

When a crisis strikes your company, you have to act fast!

The days of preparing a press release, gauging the community’s temperature, and waiting a day or two to respond are over.

A strong social media presence plays a critical role in the success of your business. But, is your social media manager really equipped to handle a social media crisis on behalf of your brand? When an emergency situation strikes, it’s important to turn to your social feed and communicate regularly and consistently with your customers. Don’t get stuck in the same boat as other companies known for mismanaging crisis situations on social media.

So, put on your company’s life preserver and dive into the deep end by following these tips to averting a social media crisis:

Make a Plan of Action

A crisis strikes with little notice, which means preparation is your saving grace. A comprehensive social media strategy should include a protocol for addressing emergency issues with your followers. If possible, your social media manager should draft pre-approved messages in advance to facilitate the dissemination of consistent, timely content. For example, your company should already have a process in place to address negative customer feedback, inclement weather, data breaches, and product recalls before these issues occur. Don’t wait until the crisis strikes to create your content or lack of preparedness can damage your brand’s credibility with customers.

Include a protocol for addressing emergency issues with your followers. Click To Tweet

Respond Swiftly

The worst thing a company can do during a crisis is to not address it promptly. An immediate response is the key to the persevering your company’s integrity. Your goal should be to respond within an hour or less and post updates as they become available. Businesses that let too much time pass before responding often experience a significant increase in negative comments, customer speculation, and public frustration. At the end of the day, staying close to the shore on social media can damage your business, so reel in your resources for regular updates.

Monitor Everywhere

Struggling to keep your head above water to provide a quick response? Choose employees to serve on a Crisis Social Media Panel. This will ensure your company has eyes on your social feeds around the clock. Choose employees who can monitor your social channels and address general questions on different shifts. If you don’t have the time to monitor the messaging out there, you may want to consider outsourcing your social media needs.

 

Is your business drowning in a sea of crisis communication on social media? Resuscitate your social strategy with our full suite of services.

 

 

Follow Macrae Brennan-Fuller:
Macrae is a Content Editor at KWSM, and has previously worked as a journalist for newspapers, magazines and online publications. She also has experience in internal communications, media relations and public affairs. Macrae's favorite social media channel is LinkedIn.