Social media is all about quick, efficient results. But it also means that even the slightest error could quickly turn into a full social media crisis. That happens more especially if you don’t know how to put out the fire right away.
Since there’s nothing worse than managing a crisis when you’re already in the middle of it, we have outlined some tips below. They are five quintessential tips that will help you prepare for social media crisis management in case it happens:
Build a strong social media policy
If you haven’t done it yet, this is the perfect time to create a social media policy that will help you avert many social media crises in the future. It should be clear and concise enough for non-social media professionals to understand it.
It should also be in line with your social media strategies. More especially with the way you want to be projected as a brand. It should consider legalities such as proper decorum, privacy protection, and confidentiality clauses.
Invest in your safety
Social media accounts are easy targets for trolls and hackers. But the biggest threat to your own accounts is actually the very people on your team.
A former employee with a grudge can easily get into your social media accounts and go rogue on you. So you need to limit access to only a few core members of your team. It’s also important to create strong passwords and change them regularly.
Know when to respond
Here’s the thing: not all negative comments call for crisis management. So learn to choose your battles. Define what a social media crisis is for your business as early as you can. This is so you can protect yourself against over reacting.
For instance, one person commenting negatively about a Facebook post doesn’t call for a response right away. That is because it could just be opinion. But if you have 20 other followers commenting the same within a day, then you should start a response.
Listen to your followers
In order to manage a crisis before it gets out of hand, you need to listen to what people are saying. You need to use a tool for tracking responses and stories about your brand. This is highly effective in averting a crisis right away.
It’s also essential to have someone tracking your campaigns at all times. With it, you can prevent any unanswered questions and comments that could easily lead to a crisis.
Go to battle prepared
Finally, you need to take the right steps towards managing a crisis. For one, stop all planned posts and address the problem as quickly and directly as you can. This will let your followers know that you are aware of the issue and you’re taking steps to correct it.
Apologize if you need to. Make sure that you have a more detailed response prepared for the public. For instance, by publishing a press release statement.
Debriefing your team about the issue and taking note of your responses are also ideal. That is so that you can use it to update your crisis management plan effectively.