Social media crisis management: how to prepare and execute a plan

Crisis management
Dmytro Polishchuk
Dmytro Polishchuk
Content writer and blog editor at PromoRepublic
≈ 3 min read
Upd. on: 2 Aug 2021

In business, people often face a problem called crisis management. In simple words, it`s the period when old principles of working and controlling your business are losing it`s efficiency. For social media developers, crisis management comes out when you start losing your followers and regular clients, your page activity becomes lower and lower every day and your content becomes uninteresting for your audience.

Such periods are common for all businesses, and sometimes you can`t avoid them. However, it doesn`t mean that you must shut down your business and stop working. No, you just need to escape from this crisis and “reload” your business. In this article, we will show you basic steps of preparing and escaping from social media crisis management.c

How to prepare for a crisis on social media?

As we told before, you can escape from the crisis management, and to do this well, you need to be prepared for potential problems. Here`s how to do it.

  1. Create a social media crisis management plan

If you have a company-wide plan in place, you will be able to act effectively when the crisis begins. Instead of wasting time debating how to handle things on social media, you`ll be empowered to take action and prevent the crisis from growing out of your control.

If you want to have a workable social media crisis management plan, make sure that you`ve competed these points:

  • Guidelines for identifying the type and magnitude of a crisis
  • A communication plan for internal updates
  • A copy of the company-wide social media policy
  • Up-to-date contact information for critical employees
  • Roles and responsibilities for every department

Run social media crisis simulations

If you will realize that everything went wrong in the middle of your crisis, it may end bad for you. However, you can prepare yourself for any possible problems. Try to identify the type of crisis that may damage your business and go through every step of your plan. If you see that there are some weak points, you need to pay more attention to them.

How to identify a potential crisis on social media

Listen carefully

As a social media marketer or community manager with at least one eye-on-eye on the Internet of all times, you will often become the first person in your company to notice a potential threat that starts to emerge on social media.

You should step up streams to in Hootsuite to monitor specific keywords or hashtags that can help you to identify the potential crisis. Here we have eight things that should be monitored for your brand protection:

  • Your company name
  • Your products or brands
  • The competition
  • Customer service enquires
  • Influencers
  • The CEO
  • Your media spokesperson or PR representatives
  • Keywords related to your industry

How to handle a crisis on social media?

Act fast

Social media provides a portal for frustration and anger to escalate into mass outrage very fast, so companies must be prepared to match.

If you won`t be using the real time of social media as your advantage, you can lose time and resources while trying to escape from your crisis. Social media offers a public forum that to immediately acknowledge the situation while you work on fine tuning more in-depth communication materials, such as getting a prepared statement released, media interviews coordinated or information updated on your website.

Let people show their opinion, but don`t turn it into a conflict

If you face crisis in the social media, it will be right to ask for some help. However, you should filter all information that comes to you. People will give you different ideas, show you some workable methods or tell about their own experience. You should take the best from it.

Ok, now you have the basic plan of what to do with social media crisis management. Don`t worry, you will go through it, just do everything step-by-step and don`t force your moves. Good luck!


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