Should a PR Crisis Affect Your Social Media Strategy?

The answer to this question is a bit complicated. While most PR crises will affect your social media strategy in one way or another, not all of them require active social media engagement.

On the one hand, today’s proliferation of social media requires it to be included in most crisis management plans. Traditional press releases and dry statements on company websites no longer meet the demands and expectations of today’s stakeholders. In order to be effective in their crisis response, modern companies need to use a variety of communication channels, including social media.

When a crisis hits, the existing social media strategy has to be adjusted accordingly. Your crisis updates can’t be mixed in with the marketing and promotional posts that may have been scheduled prior to the incident.

On the other hand, certain PR crises are better handled offline without the involvement of social media. For instance, minor incidents and internal disputes that are not likely to impact stakeholders or generate wider media coverage should not trigger an emergency social media strategy.

When considering your crisis PR response, it is important to understand how the information about the incident is likely to spread. Continuous monitoring of online conversations during crises is also essential.

Considering the complexities of these new rules of crisis PR engagement, companies must be proactive and prepare their emergency social media strategies and protocols in advance. This way, should an unforeseen situation call for immediate action, your organization will be well-positioned to use social media as a powerful tool that can help you move beyond the turmoil.


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