Facebook is littered with gossip articles about employees losing their jobs over offensive tweets or displaced humor in illicit picture captions. But it doesn’t end there. Even in the Political or Entertainment spheres of influence, there are viral memes plus recordings of indecent moments that possess the potential to obliterate their victim’s platform, assets and future relationships.
Visualize years of constructing an image, bank account, jobs, notoriety, and stability being wiped clean from a smart phone video of an angry customer.
At times, we past judgement on celebrities without entertaining the idea that this reality could be us in the future.
Fact is, passionate communication is bound to offend it’s listener. It may be intentional or unintentional; however, it is imperative to have strategies in place to protect not only your reputation, but the partners associated with your brand.
If you are in the business of changing lives and hearts, but your statements are difficult to interpret, your communication was ineffective. Ineffective communication leads to confusion and the recipient may interpret your statements based on their feelings, past experiences and/or maturity. The result may end in an offense. When dealing with social media, I list tips below to be incorporated into your Social Media Crisis Plan for incidences where public relation practices are required.
1. Peace and Love Response
One blistering problem with negative publicity rest in the idea of outside forces controlling how your brand appears to your customers. Remember, you are your brand. You control your actions and response. Restore your image by changing the way you look at criticism. Personally, I practice mediating on feedback as helpful suggestions. We must try not to be offended by others’ offensive behavior. Therefore, you have a 24 hour window to respond what you need to respond to or hold your peace. Whatever you say, stay in character. The first person to drop their peace, suffers.
If the accusing party is in your circle, send an email. Write in a non-defensive tone. Your objective is to understand and save the relationship.
Do not name call.
Do not be sarcastic.
List the facts.
Apologize when necessary.
You may become unfriended, unfollowed or gossiped about – BUT you did what you needed to do to keep the integrity of your brand and peace.
If you are unable to attract them to email, allow them to vent on your social media site or links. Demonstrate your character and integrity for everyone to see. You still have control over the publicity because people respect integrity. Directly address issues with a blog post, Facebook live etc when necessary.
2. Strategic Relationship Building 101
Becoming blacklisted is a possibility. If you find yourself in this position, an option is to develop tantalizing content to be sent to influential news, blogs, websites, YouTube channels, Instagram accounts and tweeter pages. Viewers on Social Media have limited attention spans. Outputting a heart changing policy, album or community service allows a brand to snatch back a portion of control over your reputation.
Build a relationship with these platforms:
- Talk Shows
- Radio Shows
- Online Magazines
It’s easier to send information for press releases, motivational and inspirational content when the other party knows who you are and not simply out to drain them.
3. Release Content Like Everyone Is Watching
What’s the first thing we do when we hear something controversial?
As millennials, you Google the subject to find the article.
Well, if you happen to be on the receiving end of this, calm down.
You can still control what potential clients and customers view when they search your name by releasing content on social media platforms.
Types of Content:
- Video content
- Blog content
- Instagram Pictures
When you google your name, you want to establish a strong online presence where your SEO optimization. The strongest platform for this type of work is YouTube. Google has a tendency to pull up YouTube videos first before websites and blog posts. The goal is to create enough content in hopes that when potential collaborators google your name, the favorable milestones appear first in the search results. That way, you can give your potential client or customer two types of content to choose from (positive vs. negative) in order to decipher their future relationship with your brand/company.
4. Social Media Policy
Now, I’m not saying you should have a Facebook Live discussion, Status Rant, Blog post or Tweet for every critic an angry client that speaks against your platform. Responding to troublesome posts wastes numerous amounts of energy and precious time. Consequently, it’s crucial to form a team with the ability to discern how information can negatively affect your platform and the people connected to it. Red Flags would be information arriving that your team has no knowledge of such as a potential lawsuit, jail time or direct contradiction of what your brand stand for. You should have a plan on how your platform will respond to:
- Viral Videos
- Viral pictures
- Stolen Photos
- Stolen Content
- Jail time
- Public Break Downs
- Copyright Infringement
Tip: Use sites like Google Alerts to create an alert to track where your name pops up on blogs, websites and videos.
Please let me know if these tips help you in any way. Feel free to share your experience or expertise in these situations.
Extra ResourcesDefeating An Internet BoogeyMan
The Five Languages of Apology
How To Start A Conversation and Make Friends