Are you ready should a crisis strike your company? Even the biggest and best businesses can face times of trouble, and not being prepared is the worst thing you can do. By putting a crisis management plan in place, you know what to do when the unexpected happens. Along with this plan comes the keys to identifying risk factors and doing damage control to prevent the issue from escalating.
A crisis has many elements that can affect you, including the element of surprise, the small window to make quick and informative decisions, and the threat to your enterprise. You must know how to respond quickly and with the proper methods.
What is Crisis Management?
Many business owners think that if they do everything they should and try to have excellent customer service, they will be spared from any disaster. However, this is illogical thinking, as it’s not “if” you will have a crisis but “when” that you need to consider it. Your response to these events means everything, which is what crisis management is all about.
What you say and do during these times can make or break customer relationships. It’s the one thing you can’t afford to get wrong. Other things that matter are the speed of your response, as the public wants to hear your side. The quicker you respond, the less damage control you need to do. Your goal is to stop a crisis before it has any chance to pick up steam, and therefore preparation is vital.
How Do These Plans Work?
When a building is on fire, you call the fire department to put out the flames. What would happen if these professionals came into the blaze without any plans? The whole thing would go up in smoke as they strategized on what to do.
The same analogy must be used in crisis management. If you wait and try to put together a plan when you’re in the middle of a blazing crisis, it will engulf you. However, if you have a plan of action and know how to handle it before it begins, you’re prepared and won’t let it overtake you. These plans work by preparing you for the worst-case scenario.
Creating a Crisis Management Plan
Your tactic must include many parts. Here is the strategic way NetQuid helps customers put together a plan.
1. SWOT Analysis
One of the first things we do is a SWOT analysis. This will identify your strengths as a company, weaknesses, and any potential threats looming. We need this as a baseline to build your plan. This informative analysis will help you to ensure that you get it right.
2. Social Listening
Each person on your team needs to understand and help you monitor your brand’s online presence. They can see any issues that might arise and quickly shut them down. One person can’t hold all the responsibility in this matter; as the internet is a vast virtual world, and it’s easy to miss something. Additionally, what happens if this person gets sick or leaves the company?
3. Classify Influencers
Some people will love your brand, and they can help you be successful. The key is to get influencers behind you who love your company and products. Monitoring cynic conversation allows you to stay ahead of any trouble. When there’s negative chatter, you can initiate your influencer team to step into action and redirect it with targeted messaging.
Putting Your Plan in Place
Above are just a few of the strategies we use to help companies stay ahead of a crisis, but there are many others. Do you have a strategy in place for when the unthinkable happens? Your response time means everything, so now is the time to prepare for social chatter and crises that can devastate your business.