Thanks to social media, consumers can now reach out directly to brands, voicing their frustrations and concerns for everyone to see. Because of the speed of communication on social channels, a small problem can rapidly turn into a major crisis if mishandled. Once a conversation gets traction on social media, it can be hard to stop. Before you know it, your brand could be effectively “canceled”. Social media crisis management helps you prevent that from happening. Effective social media crisis management involves getting ahead of the story by responding quickly with the right message on the right channels, thereby protecting your brand reputation and your business.
Tips for successful social media crisis management
Depending on how your teams respond, your brand image could be impacted negatively or positively by a social media crisis. Here are some tips for successful crisis management on the social web:
Act fast. Negativity spreads like a virus on social media. Pull a campaign that’s getting flack or resolve a misunderstanding by providing an explanation. Apologize, if you made a mistake, and take charge of the narrative.
Be transparent. Don’t delete a post, unless absolutely necessary, and not without providing a reason. Don’t try to hide your mistakes. Screenshots can catch you red-handed and tarnish your brand reputation.
Connect. Turn a complaint or disagreement into an opportunity to engage by reaching out directly to consumers. Write a thoughtful reply to show that your brand listens and truly cares about its customers.
Prevention, the first step in social media crisis management
The first stage in effective crisis management is prevention—keeping a crisis from happening in the first place. One way that you can prevent a crisis on social media is to develop and maintain a social media policy, or guidelines for posting on social channels. This involves outlining expectations for your brand’s owned accounts as well as employee accounts.
The second way that you can prevent a social media crisis is by using brand monitoring software or social listening tools. These tools allow you to collect mentions of your brand, products, and services from across the social web so that you can monitor relevant conversations and identify critical comments and issues necessitating a response. Social listening platforms equipped with sentiment analysis technology can even help you detect growing negative sentiment, alerting you to a change in brand perception that may signal an impending crisis.
Informing social media crisis management efforts with social listening
Social listening tools are useful for every stage of social media crisis management. By letting you keep a close and constant eye on brand health, sentiment, and engagement metrics, they can be used to detect a possible emerging crisis, assess the impact of a crisis when one strikes, and evaluate the effectiveness of actions taken to remedy the situation during and after a crisis. Social listening tools can also provide you with valuable information about the context of a crisis: where and when a spike in conversations occurred, keywords found in the conversations, demographic information about those expressing the negative sentiment, and more—insights you can use to better understand and address the problem.
Synthesio: Social media crisis management made easy
Synthesio has developed an easy-to-use social listening and AI-powered social analytics toolset that can streamline and improve your social media crisis management workflows. Synthesio provides you with the vital brand health metrics—Share of Voice, Sentiment, and Social Reputation Score—you need to monitor before, during, and after a crisis strikes.
With Synthesio, you can receive real-time alerts when unusual activity or situations that have the potential to escalate into a social media crisis are detected, enabling you to act fast and stay ready. Mid- and post-crisis, Automated Sentiment Analysis helps you gauge the reaction of online audiences while Synthesio’s proprietary metric, Social Reputation Score, allows you to quickly and accurately evaluate the performance and ROI of your crisis management efforts.
It is useful for processing millions of conversations quickly—to analyze survey responses, posts on social media, customer reviews, blog articles, discussions on forums, and customer support chats—for market research, customer service, marketing, PR, and political campaigns. It is a powerful technology that can be used to extract meaningful insights from social media data and assist organizations in gauging public opinion about a certain topic or keyword.
What is a social media crisis?Carmen Yeung2020-02-12T10:36:55-05:00
This refers to a major negative shift in conversations about your brand on social media, a significant increase in mentions about your brand, product(s), or service(s) that have the potential to negatively impact your organization by disrupting your business, hurting your brand reputation, and resulting in significant revenue loss.
What are the three phases of crisis management?Carmen Yeung2020-10-13T11:00:26-04:00
The first phase is the pre-crisis phase during which an organization prepares for a possible crisis by creating a crisis management plan, assembling a crisis management team, and coming up with strategies to mitigate risk in the case of a crisis. The second phase is mid-crisis or the point at which an organization is taking action to respond to a life crisis. And the final phase is the post-crisis phase during which the members involved in a crisis management effort will evaluate the effectiveness of their actions and use what they learn to refine their crisis management plan.
First, you should cancel all scheduled posting and inform your employees to stay off social channels until the situation is resolved. Then, you will need to bring together your crisis management team and decide on a spokesperson and how best to respond, developing appropriate messaging. Depending on the severity of the crisis, you will likely need to publish an official statement on your website and/or offer an explanation on social channels as soon as possible. Social listening tools can help you detect a social media crisis early, evaluate the impact of your efforts to resolve the crisis, and ensure that your brand health returns to normal.