Having a social media presence is an important crisis preparedness strategy.
There are many organizations out there that still don’t have a social presence for one reason or another. Sometimes, they don’t see the value in it, other times they think social media isn’t necessary for their line of work, and others simply procrastinate out of fear of the unknown.
The reality is however, that having a social presence, at the very lest, is an intelligent pre-crisis strategy that every organization needs to consider. Without any kind of social presence, in a crisis you will:
- Not have a way of communicating, responding and updating your audiences on the platforms that they want to receive those communications
- Not be familiar with the online tools needed to manage the crisis successfully
- Not be able to respond appropriately within the allotted 15-60 minute time-frame
- Be left vulnerable and at the mercy of the public
So, if your organization isn’t currently on social media for whatever reason, the following are the social media channels that I recommend getting familiar with and having a small presence on, even if an inactive one.
The 2 social media platforms you absolutely need to be on, pre-crisis
No matter where a crisis unfolds, one thing we know is that it will be shared, discussed – and your organization will be mentioned – on Twitter. Set up a Twitter account now, grab your custom URL and become familiar with the following functions:
- How the platform works
- How to tweet, retweet and reply to a tweet
- What a DM is and how to do it
- What hashtags are
- How to monitor the platform
- How to search for hashtags throughout the platform
- What trending hashtags are
If you need to publish a video response in a crisis, YouTube is the place where that video needs to be published. From there you can embed it to your corporate website and share it anywhere else, but publishing the original video to YouTube will give you the maximum search engine optimization (SEO) advantages and many more.
There’s no excuse because now you know!
No matter what your reason for not being on social media was, there’s no excuse for not having an account on the above two social media platforms as a crisis preparedness strategy. Trust me, it’s a simple minimum requirement considering the multitude of reputational repercussions that can result from not taking the time to follow this advice.
Author of Crisis Ready: Building an Invincible Brand in an Uncertain World, Melissa Agnes is a leading authority on crisis preparedness, reputation management, and brand protection. Agnes is a coveted keynote speaker, commentator, and advisor to some of today’s leading organizations faced with the greatest risks. Learn more about Melissa and her work here.