Between online misinformation, misleading advertisements, and social media trolls, today’s crisis management planners have to be prepared for any type of emerging disaster. Whether that’s on a familiar front or a new and unexpected one, the best way of managing a crisis is with a solid plan.
These days, brands and crisis management planners have to keep learning new strategies that can both deal with and prevent a potential crisis quickly. Unfortunately, even big brands, that have previously gone through a PR crisis, haven’t planned on how to go about it effectively, until they were right in the middle of one.
However, it’s much easier to go through a crisis with good crisis management efforts and a solid plan – both things that help brands and businesses in preventing any long-term damage. The right language and spokesperson has to be defined, and a designated team of people that will be working on the responses for any type of crisis.
Responding Quickly and Effectively
With the ever-increasing prevalence of social media use, it’s become a great tool for marketing, branding, and growth for the business itself. However, with it come many risks and potentials for a PR crisis, considering the fact that even a single false piece of information about a business can reach thousands of people in a matter of minutes.
When combined with the backlash that a piece of negative false information can create with the public, the business is on course for a big PR disaster. After all, there are few other things that can spark a backlash than when people find out that a corporation has been behaving in any sort of unacceptable way – even if that information isn’t true.
No matter how outlandish that information might be, a brand has to be ready to respond to it at a moment’s notice. Otherwise, the information might end up spreading further, while also sparking bigger and bigger false rumors about the company. So it’s up to the brands to monitor their social media feeds closely and, should anything arise, respond as fast as possible.
However, the information doesn’t necessarily need to be false in order for it to spread quickly with the public. Although research shows that false information tends to be shared a lot faster than actual facts, it doesn’t mean that a crisis can’t happen from it. Brands and corporations shouldn’t be caught off guard, simply because they hadn’t been monitoring what the people have been talking about regarding the organization on social media platforms. There are plenty of tools available that should make this task a lot easier for the designated crisis management team.
Additionally, whenever a brand does respond to any sort of claim that has made the public react in a negative manner, the response needs to be respectful and factual. If the company didn’t do any of the claims, it has to be ready to counter them with factual information. However, if the claims are true, it should acknowledge the mistakes, then establish and communicate a plan of action going forward.