Public relations and social media disasters could happen from time to time – from big brands to smaller ones. While you may not fully avoid these types of PR and social media disasters, you may control the impact and how your brand handles them makes the difference.
The Five Stages of PR Disaster via Marketoonist Tom Fishburne
In a post SproutSocial, they’ve enumerated the 5 infamous social media disasters and provided great suggestions on how to avoid them.
1. Disaster: United Airlines Tries to Ignore the Conversation
Their Solution: United Airlines apologized and donated $3,000 to the Thelonious Monk Jazz Institute per Carroll’s request
2. Disaster: Domino’s Pizza Employees Gone Wild
Their Solution: Domino’s did not issue a formal press release but did finally open a Twitter account to answer questions, later posting a YouTube apology to try to diffuse the public relations fiasco.
3. Dell Tries to Stop the Conversation
Their Solution: Dell wrote its own blog article which included “Dell’s 23 confessions” and began with the simple admission, “We blew it.”
4. Chrysler Gives up Control
Their Solution: Deleted the tweet, did not renew their contract with the agency and fired the employee
5. Belkin Tries to Have Too Much Control
Their Solution: Belkin issued an apology, but only after consumers began a Belkin boycott.
How Should Your Brand Deal with PR and Social Media Disasters?
1. Create preventive and protective plan
While every brand may not have total control on whatever issue may arise, it is essential that there’s a protective and preventive plan in place so that you may better face the crisis head on once its arise. Nothing beats preparation.
Brand teams should spend time thinking about how they would handle a crisis no matter how big or small it may be.
2. Establish ground rules
Marketers can’t plan for every single thing that could go wrong, but they should establish ground rules. It is essential that you create guidelines for your social media team to follow. In order to make sure that every member understands their role and scope of responsibility, ensure that each team member is provided with proper training and feedback so they understand what they can and cannot do
3. Hire the right team member
Put aces on their places. Make sure that you have the right team in place. Waiting until a crisis happens is too late. Each team member must understand the company’s core value so they could respond to the crisis accordingly.
Do not wait for a social media crisis to happen. Ensure that your company has installed all the preventive measures and that every team member understands the essence of their role when faced with crisis.