Social media issue vs crisis: know the difference

With so much information on social media and everyone having access, some mistakes and road bumps are bound to come up. When presenting your business online, you need to be aware of issues that could arise and how to deal with these effectively. Put in place strategies to help combat conflicts but most importantly, know the differences and the need in which to respond to avoid panic and further mistakes.

Potential issue:
A potential issue can be the occasional negative comment or bad review on a page. When something small like this has come up, it can usually be solved by proactive measures from one team member, often a customer service representative or social media manager. Do not delete comments like this or engage with internet trolls. The best way to handle it is to politely reply asking for the discussion to be moved to direct messages where you can gain more information about the situation privately.

An issue is when there is a volume of negative comments that is gaining traction. When there is an influx of such comments more resources may be needed, such as more staff to aid it defusing the situation. In a situation like this, it is important to find the cause, whether it be a poor joke or post that didn’t hit the mark, so you can prevent a similar incident from occurring again. Issues are not the end of the world for your social media presence, every situation is a learning experience and these will help better your practices later on.

A crisis is when there is a significant volume of comments on various posts or social platforms, with public attention and media coverage. This is when you need to be the most careful and socially aware, a strong knowledge of your audience will help you quickly identify the cause. A crisis will need attention from the communications department, management and customer services. Make sure every department is cohesive when addressing the situation and not rushed in responding, being too quick to try and fix something can lead to further problems, understand the concerns of the audience before responding.


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