Why rehearse a social media crisis kate hartley carrot communications for slideshare
Why rehearse a social media crisis?Kate Hartley, MD, Carrot Communications@katehartley
IntroductionTamara Littleton, CEO of eModeration, and I head up a social media agency and PRcompany respectively. The shift that social media has brought in how a crisis breaksimpelled us to combine our companies’ experience and expertise in reputationmanagement, social media and PR, to create a social media simulator.We believe an effective real-time simulated experience of a social media crisis givesyou and your team the best chance of riding out a social media storm successfully;perhaps even brilliantly.A real crisis is one of the most damaging things to brand reputation. And social mediareally has completely changed how an issue breaks, and how we can manage it.
When a crisis hits, there are six things that come into play that define how a teamfeels and responds to a pressure situation. We call these the ‘hot seat factors ‘of acrisis:In a crisis you have to think quickly, and act quickly. Best practice says wehave 15 minutes to respond on Twitter, and an hour on Facebook. Thisisn’t enough time to work out a strategy1. Speed ofresponseHiding behind a corporate press statement could destroy everythingyou’ve invested in social media. Individuals tweet, and post – notcompanies2. VisibilitySocial media means we deal directly with the public through social mediachannels. And the public won’t always have an objective view; personalagendas and emotion come into play.3. UnpredictabilityWhen you hand over your message to the public you can’t control whathappens to it. It’ll develop and change as it’s passed around inconversation.4. Lack of controlEverything we do is being watched, scrutinised and analysed. We’relearning from our industry peers, which means they’re learning from us –good and bad.5. This is a youngindustryThere’s a real fear that whatever you do in a crisis could come back tobite you. So if you take on the benefits, you have to take on the risks.6. The boomerangeffect
When a crisis breaks, it’slikely to be over newssites, Twitter, Facebook,Instagram, blogs, forums,TV and YouTube. The firstreporters to any crisisscene are citizens armedwith smartphones and aTwitter account.The first videos to emerge of the devastating tornadoes in Oklahoma, or theTsunami in Japan, were taken on mobile phones. The news of the Hudson river airlanding was broken to the world by a cameraphone picture on Twitter. These arethe images that became the defining pictures of the disasters. Every citizen with aphone and a Twitter account is a reporter.
Marketers mostly spread our message througha third party conduit: the media, oradvertising, or search. Social media haschanged all that. You can tell when a brand iscomfortable on social media, talking direct toits followers. This is a great example of a veryhuman error – and response – from an Oregonfire department.
On the flip side, you can also tell when someone isn’tvery used to responding publicly, or has auto tweets setup. American Airlines responded to every Tweet aboutit saying ‘thank you for your support’, even when thiswas the message.
Taking an issue off your feedto someone who can help is,in principle, a Good Idea.But choose your audience.Next invited a customer todelete a Tweet where shementioned them (alongsidesome fairly explicitlanguage). Unsurprisingly,the request to ‘censor’ herpost didn’t go down well.
BIC’s launch of Pens ‘For Her’. How did wewomen manage to write before we had pensin girl colours?
Was asking Ellen to review Pens For Her a good idea?Watch the video and decide.
This is a great example of theunpredictability of the publicresponse, from UK cinema chainCineworld.
These case studies don’t go away. DaveCarroll, of United Breaks Guitars Fame, is stillsetting our social media and customer servicestrategies, four years after United broke hisguitar.
This is the Nixon Kennedy moment in social media. The time when our perception ofbusinesses through social media, and our perception of the business of social mediais shifting. The time when communicators and social media managers are steppingup.We may not be able to manage how an issue breaks. But we can control how werespond. And now, we can practice getting that response right, using simulationtechnology.
Contact Kate Hartley for information on our social mediacrisis simulations for brands and agencies, run in partnershipwith eModerationKate.email@example.comTel: +44 207 178 5052Twitter: @katehartley