Your Online Reputation is My Business

When your online reputation is hit by a crisis, you want to be able to fix that as soon as possible. You want to be able to concentrate on fixing the data breach, safeguarding your customer’s data, restore their trust in your company.

To restore the trust of your customers you need to be able to respond fast and adequate. Because in case of a crisis on social media facts disappear and opinions reign. And everything happens within seconds. So, if you can’t get your true story out there fast, your online reputation will suffer. And if you’re in the middle of an online reputation crisis, you’re too late. Then there’s no time to figure out what to say.

The True Story Company helps companies and entrepreneurs to be prepared for a social media crisis by helping them plan ahead of time.

Having a social media crisis communications plan will help your company create clarity on what to post, who should post it, who approves posts. As a result, you will have time focus your attention on what matters most in a crisis: resolving the root cause.

That’s a small step for man…

When Neil Armstrong landed on the moon, there was no internet, no social media and no fake news. There was just this one television stream from the moon.

Still, the moon landing is arguably the greatest and definitely one of the most controversial achievements of mankind.

Why was the flag waving when there is no wind?

What did Armstrong really say?

Was Armstrong even on the moon? Or was it what now would be called a deep fake produced by Hollywood?

For those who do believe that he was on the moon (myself included) Armstrong made one small step for a man and a giant leap for mankind when he set foot on the lunar surface.

Your reputation is made and broken online

Fast forward fifty years in time and there the same event would be subject to scrutiny on Twitter, fact checkers and fake news fabricators. It would likely have led to some sort of a social media crisis. Because this is the age of internet and social media.

And while social media has definitely opened up the opportunities to make yourself heard there is also a downside. One small misstep may wreak havoc.

These missteps may seem small. They could be a poorly worded social media post, one unfair complaint from one disgruntled employee or contractor, or a company website that has hacked. And while you are doing all that you can to resolve the issue at hand, your public reputation comes under fire.

It’s a small step to a social media crisis

Because social media is becoming less and less forgiving. That one small misstep may nowadays result in your company being ambushed and trolled by annoying humans (and bots). And before you know it, your reputation has been thoroughly destroyed.

So, the question comes up: what to do if this happens? You know that you cannot possibly prevent all problems from happening, right? And you want to be on social media as well. After all, it is a great resource to create a positive brand and it generates long term relationships with customers and followers.

Social Media Crisis Communication Plan

The answer to the question is simple: be prepared. Make sure you know what to do and what not. Make sure you can inform your customers and employees adequately. Make sure that everyone in your company knows who has what role in a crisis.  That way you have the ability to concentrate on what matters most: taking care of the root cause of the social crisis.

If you know in advance what to do in case of a social media crisis, you will have less stress managing it. And your reputation will take less of a hit, so it takes less long to recover.

That’s a small step to being prepared

Right now, because there is no social media crisis to manage, you have a choice. You have the choice to prepare or to stick your head in the sand. Most companies stick their head in the sand like an ostrich and hope things will blow over when they happen. They take things as they are. Because preparing for a social media crisis takes time and effort. They think they can’t do anything about it anyway. And since time equals money, they hope that they will never be in a social media crisis situation.

You are not like most companies. You have invested money to build your brand online and offline. You have invested in technology to create a wonderful customer experience. And you do not want a small misstep to destroy all that hard work. You understand what it takes to be prepared. And you want to be prepared.

  • Being prepared means that you know what can happen and understanding the impact of it. Not exactly but you need to have a good understanding of likelihood and impact.
  • Being prepared means having a plan to deal with the situation. Not only solving the technical issue but also on how to communicate to customers and employees.
  • Finally, being prepared means having tested all plans and procedures. This test is really necessary, and – unlike the real world – failure is a good option in the test phase.

Do you want to take that small step?

If you want to be prepared, or if you want a second pair of eyes to make sure you are, True Story Company can help.

If you want to know how, leave your name and e-mail address. As a favor, I will send you a social media crisis preparation checklist for free.

It takes 20 years to build a reputation and five minutes to ruin it. If you think about that, you’ll do things differently.

Warren Buffet