• Posted on: 16 October 2018

Here are the 9 steps to successfully managing a social media crisis.

1. Pause All Outbound Messages

If there’s even a hint of a crisis or public storm building, immediately pause all scheduled content queued to post to your social media channels. Notify any social care representatives to shift to monitor-only mode. This can prevent their innocent attempts to respond before the company is ready to make a statement.

2. Acknowledge An Issue

Your first response should always be “yes, we realize something has happened” even if you have ZERO answers. This will stem the tide of “hey company, did you know?” messages, and give the response team a chance to activate and gather information. Respond in the place where the crisis first occurs. If it starts on Facebook, post your first response to Facebook. Then determine where to go next.

3. Create a Crisis FAQ Page

Determine where the focal point will be for all communications about the crisis. Create a landing page or micro-site on the website, or designate a single social media channel and put all the information about the crisis in one place. This allows you to respond to questions with a link instead of an answer. This saves time and prevents misinterpretation of your responses (especially on Twitter). Update all bio links to point to the crisis FAQ.

This Crisis FAQ should include:

* Acknowledgment of the crisis
* Details about the occurrence
* Photos and/or videos, if available
* How the company found out
* Who was alerted when and how
* Specific actions taken in response
* Real or potential effects
* Steps taken to prevent future occurrence
* Contact information for real people at the company.