Social media crises can happen to anyone. Even the biggest and most popular brands are not immune to negative publicity and open criticism – just think of Starbucks. To a large extent, social media crises can be kept under control with proper management but keeping negativity away from brand pages is not the most important thing. It is the way a brand responds to it that actually has an impact on its image online, Business2Community noted.
Most marketers agree that in order to prevent big blow-outs, brands should allow moderate amounts of venting to take place on their social media pages. Encouraging followers to express their opinions, to share reviews and to discuss topics related to business is a commendable way to let users voice their concerns. This also impresses on the consumer that the brand is collaborative, confident and customer-centred.
Monitoring the comments that users make on social media is essential for keeping things under control, experts say. There are tools that allow certain keywords or hash tags to alert potential issues and to allow early response.
Arguably the most important part of dealing with a crisis is the response from the brand. On the one hand, it has to be quick but on the other, it needs to be carefully planned and authentic, rather than automated. Industry experts say that being honest is what counts in this case, so the best response from brands is to admit if something has gone wrong on their end and tell the customer what will be done to improve things.
Deleting comments is one of the biggest mistakes that brands can make, reputation experts agree. Instead, negative comments should be addressed as quickly as possible and with personal attention paid to the user in question.