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What to Look Out for on Social Media During a Crisis

A Screaming Bird

When you’re handling a crisis for a client, it’s important to keep the media informed and up to date at all times. Crisis management is essentially a 24/7 service. So, knowing that, have you started checking social media platforms for comments and news about your crisis?

You would be surprised to see how fast a crisis can spread across social media. On day one, maybe only a few people are talking about your predicament on Facebook and Twitter. But, by day two a hashtag has been created, thousands of people are talking about it and the word is spreading to corners of the world you never dreamed of reaching.

After checking for articles, editorials and rants written about your crisis, go on Facebook and look for pages created by both parties involved in the situation. See if others connected to the crisis indirectly have created Facebook pages. Check on these pages frequently, but do not LIKE them. If the page is private, see if you can find another page that is public. Liking these pages will simply add fuel to the fire.

Think of the possible hashtags that could be created around your crisis and search for them on Twitter. See if the parties involved have created specific Twitter handles to spread the word. And, think of keywords associated with your crisis and search for those without a hashtag. Depending on how long your crisis has been going on, you could find that there are just a few tweets about what’s going on—or maybe there is a large quantity.

Don’t forget about YouTube. If you think people aren’t going to take the time during a crisis to get their point across by setting up a webcam and videotaping their comments, you are wrong.  There may not be a lot of people doing this, but don’t be surprised if you come across one or two channels dedicated strictly to your crisis.

Remember, though, you are going to find comments with derogatory remarks, slander, bashing, etc. Use your best judgment in filtering the useful information from the trash talk.

Check social media accounts daily to see what updates have occurred. It is an essential tool for crisis management.

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