Brand Crisis: Is Social Media Better than PR?

It’s every brand’s worst nightmare – getting into a showdown with consumers that tarnishes your squeaky clean image. All of the hard work you’ve put into building up a strong name for your business goes out the window in an instant. We’ve seen this happen time and time again to even the biggest of corporations, seemingly in real time. Social media has opened this window making the PR problems of all companies a public display. It’s scary at best, and calls for a proactive online reputation management strategy.

Putting together a plan that actively pushes your positive image, while at the same time planning for potential issues is key. It’s best to consult with online reputation management services to determine what steps you should be taking. One question that may come to mind, though, is whether you should use social media or PR for brand crisis control.

The answer is simple – you should be using a combination of both PR and social media.

The Value of Social Media

The one thing we can say about social media is that it allows brands instant access to the public eye. This is crucial for getting out messages after a brand crisis. The quicker you can make a statement, the better your chances of reducing the impact of the event. One of the top rules of crisis control is to respond right away.

This is why social media should be a part of your online reputation management strategy. If you already have a presence here, then you’ll ensure you have a voice in this dire time.

Don’t Undervalue PR

You don’t want to ignore the traditional methods of crisis management. Still put out a press release and attempt to get media attention on the matter. The more outlets spewing your half of the story, the better. The goal is to remedy the situation, not point fingers. So focus on offering solutions to the problem rather than looking for a scapegoat. This will quickly turn off customers and could cost you a large portion of your loyal following.

Together, social media and PR can effectively help reduce the damage caused during a backlash from the public. Without these venues, you will be at the mercy of the public and they are very lacking in that commodity. It’s always best to take a head-on approach to your online reputation management. So get together with an SEO services company that also specializes in ORM to start preparing for potential crises that could arise in the future.

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