#1. The need for speed...
Social media crisis response brings a new dimension to crisis communications: speed.
With social media crisis management, time is of the essence: the first 24 hours are crucial as this is when people will cast their digital nets out and frantically search for information.
So assuming incident response is already well established in your organisation, you are in good shape as you have most of the building blocks in place. One easy block to add (now!) is a web page dedicated to a potential crisis/ breach. Having this prepared with an easy structure to follow will enable you to control the flow of information very quickly.
The structure of your web page should follow what Neira Jones calls The Three As and it should include the following sections:
Who attacked you? Why? etc.; When did it happen? How did it happen? How widespread? What/ who does it affect? How did you find out? But first and foremost, take ownership.
All too often, organisations do not acknowledge that their customers/ partners/ stakeholders/ etc. may be worried/ could be inconvenienced/ need to be reassured. See The Power of an Apology.
At this stage, you may not know a lot, but you need to share what steps you propose to take/ have already taken to i) determine what happened and ii) prevent it from re-occuring and iii) Maintain the trust of your customers/ stakeholders/ partners/ etc.
You also need to reassure your customers/ partners/ stakeholders and show them you understand the situation
Design your web page with this structure in mind so content can easily be dropped in when needed.
A successful social media crisis response strategy can be summarised by
1) The Need For Speed
2) Head For Spread and
3) Check The Decks...
As ever, the best line of defence is being prepared...