Crisis Communication Management – The PR Superhero

Meltwater-Infographic-mod3

 

If you haven’t clicked on the above given image, do it NOW! The above infographic, which unfortunately refuses to display full size, is the best thing you can ever come across if you are a PR person.

In a world where digital communication can be sent at the drop of a hat, this ten step process is the ideal toolkit to have in place for emergency situations. According to meltwater.com, “A real PR crisis is a negative story about your brand that has gained momentum, has reached a critical stage and threatens the reputation of your brand/business. (Cowlin, 2014) So basically when someone’s talking bulls**t about your brand and you need to fix it!

Below are the 10 steps for you to follow when a crisis needs saving from a PR superhero. –

Step 1 – Inhale, Exhale, Repeat

You need to relax to think straight. Maybe some breathing would help, don’t you think?

Step 2 – Circle the Wagons & Sound the Alarm

Inform the entire PR team including all officials such as customer service or social media members of what has happened and how you want to take charge of it. Also, let everyone know not to respond to any social updates till any concrete decisions are made.

Step 3 – Investigate What Happened

Find out EXACTLY what happened, not a story your neighbour made up. The four main things you need to be informed of are; what happened, what the public thinks happened, how the public reacted and what channels need immediate attention.

Step 4 – Understand the Business Impact

Figure out how your actions will affect your business or brand. You don’t want your emergency decision to cause more harm than good.

Step 5 – Listen Up

Keep track of the reactions of the media and public. The questions you need answered at this point are how big is the issue, how many people are talking about this incident, what is the overall sentiment, are people supporting your or against you, is the media reacting and if any stories have been published.

Step 6 – Decide on Corporate Position and Messaging

After gathering all your information using the first 5 steps, decide the stance your brand is going to take in the current situation.

Step 7 – Make Decisions on Channels of Distribution

Finalise the media channels you will use to let everyone know of your position and decide what communication your social media team should respond to and how. For example –

  • Social updates individually or as whole
  • Individual inquiries through email or phone
  • Sending out an email blast to your clients and subscribers
  • A corporate blog post
  • Through a press release

Step 8 – Get the WORD OUT

Act on the decisions you made in step 7.

Step 9 – Monitor Reaction and React as Needed

Analyse how the public is responding to your message and decide how you respond to them as well as if the situation is still a crisis.

Step 10 – Learn from the Process

The things you learn from a real-life situation, you can never learn at university or from a website. Make the most of your learnings to avoid the situation in the future.

 

I’m not even a PR student, but this info graphic made SO MUCH sense to me. Hope it helped you too!

Reference –

Cowlin, M. (2014). Infographic: 10 step crisis communication management. Retrieved, 2014, Retrieved from http://www.meltwater.com/public-relations-blog/crisis-communication-infographic/

 

Social Media Management – How important is it?

In a world where you would need to turn off the wifi in your homes to get the family to gather in one place, yes, social media management is absolutely essential for every brand that exists.

Social Media Management has created a whole new department of jobs in every firm which means the ever-growing population might actually have jobs now! Woo-hoo!

Considering how active I personally am on social media platforms, I cannot even fathom how easy it is for a brand to reach me and people like me by just having an online presence. However, this presence needs to be monitored and modified to the target market. You cannot advertise old-age homes to a student who hasn’t even entered the workforce yet. This is precisely why brands do need social media management along with a qualified and efficient social media manager.

Having been a part of the Social Media Tactics class has helped me learn a lot more about major online platforms which has now helped modify how I would write copy for a brand’s Facebook page, and to be honest, how I currently write on my own Facebook profile as well.

As they say, once you post something on the online universe that is the internet, it stays there forever. If that’s the case, I say we all need to keep track of the quality of content we upload. Nobody want’s a stupid status from 8th grade suddenly show up do they? (Yes, this happened to me over the weekend.) Also, there’s an app called Scrubber that will now save you from putting up work that’s NSFW! Have a look at it on the link given in the references. (Koman, 2014)

Until the next post 🙂

Reference:

Koman, T. (2014). New App Warns You If Your Social Feeds Are Too NSFW. Retrieved 2014, from http://www.cosmopolitan.com/entertainment/news/a28522/scrubber-app-nsfw-social-feeds/

Google+ – Why do you even exist?

Most people I know would probably be asking the same question that forms the title of this post. However, the one thing we don’t realise is that Google + is a lot more than just Google+ or G+. It’s the entire Google family.

Have you ever used Google Chrome, Google Play or YouTube? All of these require you to make a Google account, or smartly put, a Google+ account. I personally don’t even remember why and when I made one, but the only time it actually struck me was when I opened my browser window and had the Google logo modified into party mode wishing me Happy Birthday! Les-be-onest (Pitch Perfect Reference!), I was flattered for the first 5 seconds, but post that was when I started to get creeped out wondering how they remembered or even knew my birthday. And also, the fear of what else they knew. I’m not a serial killer or anything but it was still something I worried about. That’s when I noticed the Google+ logo in the corner with my ID logged in. Stupid, Anjan.

“Google says it has more than 300 million monthly users, which is more than Twitter at 240 million, but Nielsen has found people spend little time on Google Plus.” (Sloan, 2014) I have never in my life had anyone ask me if I had a Google+ account. Never. But then again, almost every single person I know uses YouTube. Well played, Google.

Reference:

Sloane, G. (2014). Google Plus Just as Popular as Twitter in U.S., Study Says. Retrieved 2014, from http://www.adweek.com/news/technology/google-plus-just-popular-twitter-us-study-says-156645

 

LinkedIn – The Work-verse

Every second lecturer or tutor I’ve met at University, has asked me if I had a LinkedIn account. And when I said I didn’t, they would immediately flip! So I finally got one.

To be absolutely honest, I’ve had my LinkedIn account for a couple of months now but I only just updated it to my most recent work profile last night. I’ve never been really active on it, but when I did actually update everything yesterday, I started to add all these people as my connections and my profile was on a roll! I had people I didn’t know viewing my profile and that made me realise how essential it was. You never know when a potential employer is looking through your profile and could help you land your dream job, right?

Also, I did find this article online which I believer outlines everything about LinkedIn I’d want to say. I will mention the highlights on here and you can read through the entire piece using the link mentioned at the end. So here are the 15 LinkedIn Mistakes You Can Easily Avoid. (Shane, 2014)

Mistake #1: Having an Unfinished LinkedIn Profile

Mistake #2: Posting an Inappropriate Picture, or Worse, No Picture

Mistake #3:  Connecting to People, Then Immediately Trying to Sell Them

Mistake #4: Using Inaccurate Career Information

Mistake #5:  Not Including Dates and Brief Job Descriptions in Your Experience

Mistake #6: Infrequent Status Updates

Mistake #7: Over Posting Daily

Mistake #8: Asking for Recommendations From People You Barely Know

Mistake #9:  Sending Direct Spammy Stuff

Mistake #10: Posting Overly Negative Comments

Mistake # 11: Being Too Self Serving in Groups

Mistake #12: Not Including Links to Your Key Sites on Your Profile

Mistake #13: Not Personalizing Your LinkedIn Profile URL

Mistake #14: Using LinkedIn Like Facebook or Instagram

Mistake #15: Not Personalizing Your Connection Requests or Personal Messages

 

I’ve definitely learned a thing, or five from this post and I hope this helps you too!

Reference:

Shane, D. (2014). 15 LinkedIn Mistakes You Can Easily Avoid. Retrieved 2014, from http://smallbiztrends.com/2014/06/linkedin-mistakes-to-avoid.html

 

Pinterest – Our virtual pin-board

I have to admit, I haven’t actually used Pinterest in a while now. But yes, there was a phase where I had 20 different boards with one for everything from ‘Nail Art Designs’ to ‘The Vampire Diaries’.

Pinterest can be an extremely addictive social media platform when you do start to use it, but I can’t help but feel how it is a partial rip-off of tumblr. “In terms of visual micro-blogging or social bookmarking websites, Pinterest and Tumblrhave taken center stage as image-driven organizational centers for billions of images, categorized and curated by each user to create their individual profile.” (Happe, 2012) I absolutely love tumblr and do check it once every 2-3 days and have a couple of my own blogs on it as well. However, with Pinterest, when you first start to use it, it’s super exciting with the option to segregate the images you like and the tons of DIY projects it hosts. I even made my own makeup-remover wipes once, which were a fail, but come on, I tried. My mother did start to go crazy with all the projects that I wanted to try and was on the verge of trying to shut down my account somehow (Oh boy) but I stopped eventually.

On a personal note, I don’t think it’s something, like Facebook or Instagram, that could stick on or have your attention for a very long time. It feels a lot like a one-hit wonder to me. Now if only they decided to update it and switch up a couple of things to make it more desirable…

Reference:

Happe, M. (2012). Tumblr v. Pinterest – which is right for you?. Retrieved 2014, from http://college.usatoday.com/2012/05/01/tumblr-v-pinterest-which-is-right-for-you/

The 100 Happy Days Insta-Challenge!

We’re all #instaobsessed with #Instagram and we #knowit. Okay, i’ll stop.

Welcome to the world of great food photography and selfies. That’s Instagram for you in a sentence. One of the ongoing fads that Instagram is flooded with is the ‘100 Happy Days’ challenge. This challenge basically gets you to sign up to the challenge’s website, pick your form of social media (most people pick our favourite, #Instagram) and then start to post an image of something that makes you happy every single day for the next 100 days.

I was feeling particularly excited one afternoon and decided to take it on. “Interestingly, the simple sounding experiment has a fail rate of 71 percent. Most of those who give up say they lack the time to get involved.” (Gardner, 2014) And unlike the 71% of people who didn’t manage to complete it, I did. I have to say though, it is sort of hard to document something every single day and to remember to post it on time. I had days where it was hard to pick between 3 amazing photos and days where I couldn’t even find one. This challenge has definitely got people using Instagram and helped it gain SO much more popularity.

If you’re looking for something to motivate you to get more social media-savvy, I’d recommend trying this challenge for sure!

You’ll be hash-tagging #APA referencing at the end of it! Haha.

Reference:

Gardner, J. (2014). The daily delights of the 100-day happiness challenge. Retrieved 2014, from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2609273/Photographing-daily-delights-100-day-happiness-challenge-social-media-users-posting-shots-one-thing-day-brings-joy.html

Twitter – Helping journalists since 2006, or not?

Being a journalism student, since the beginning of university, almost every professor in week one of class has said ‘ Less is more’. Now of course, they aren’t referring to the amount of assignments. What they are actually talking about, is word count.

As journalists, we’ve been trained to believe that the lesser words you can tell your story in, the better it is. And i’d say if you’re a journo using Twitter, the 140 character-limit that they have definitely make you rethink your statement and gives you a chance to better your writing. “There’s actually a reason behind the not-so-arbitrary 140 character limit of Twitter and that is simply to fit in an SMS message. It’s a limitation that actually defines and sets Twitter apart from other services in so many good ways. It is easier to consume, cheaper in terms of SMS/data sent and received, and it actually encourages people to get straight to the point.” (Tan, 2011)

But what if you’re not a journo? What if you’re a teenager who’s going crazy over the new One Direction single? You’re not going to give a s*** about the spelling! That’s when you start to shorten your words by eliminating vowels and risk yourself sounding like someone who needs to go back to grade school.

The reason for the 140 character limit existing is so that it was similar to the length of a single SMS. Well, if this is how things are going to go on, I’m positive that Twitter isn’t going to help make the world a better place, well at least not their English.

Reference:

Tan, F. (2011). Why Twitter Should Never Expand Beyond 140 Characters – The Next Web. Retrieved 2014, from http://thenextweb.com/twitter/2011/02/21/why-twitter-should-never-expand-beyond-140-characters/