It is said that the amount of data that was generated in the twentieth century is today generated in one hour. Millions of people are constantly using social media platforms like Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Snapchat to exchange news and information. It could be personal day to day ramblings, an airline’s wrong move against its clientele, or the French elections. The content varies widely. In such a social media atmosphere where real time live updates have been enabled by features like FacebookLive and InstaLive, it is very difficult to moderate the content that is unleashed on the web. Controlling what the millennial may be posting at any given moment is next to impossible. Therefore a sound social media PR strategy is paramount for every brand.
Any piece of news or information in the hands of a teenager with a phone and a Twitter account will be on the internet within seconds. Such information if manages to catch the attention of the said teenager’s followers will go viral within minutes. Information spreads like wildfire, hopping from Twitter to Facebook to Instagram, and before anyone realises it, they have a PR scandal on their hands.
It is essential to constantly monitor the content being generated about your brand and everyone associated with you across all platforms of social media. Have people looking out and managing your various social media accounts. Alerts for all keywords related to you can help. This constant monitoring will bring all news and information posted about you to your notice. In the case of any red flags, you can immediately snap into the conservative mode and activate your crisis management tactics.
Social monitoring also helps you recognise minor issues that have the potential to blow out of proportion into a full-fledged scandal in the future. Early intervention in such a case can prevent that. Complaints and feedback should be addressed in time to prevent any backlash.
In case a PR issue is blown out of proportion and you are faced with a social media nightmare, your first tactic should be to identify key influencers. These are people who are most actively contributing to the issue being paraded. The people with maximum followers and maximum traction are the ones who need to be singled out. There will be two kinds of influencers. Those working against you and those working for you. Target the ones against you to understand why they are keeping the issue alive. If you can sort things out with them and either turn them in your favour or discredit them, the issue will die out. Use the ones in your favour to get positive press and generate information that will showcase your brand in a good light.
Understand the popular opinion and tackle the situation accordingly. Social media monitoring can help you save face on more occasions than one and save the integrity of your brand on the internet.