4 Ways to Leverage Twitter During a Crisis

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On Twitter, reactions to your company’s crisis can spread like wildfire if you don’t extinguish the flames as quickly as possible. One poorly timed or worded tweet can gain momentum and spread internationally within an hour.

Avoid amplifying the issue by preparing in advance and having team members assigned to each communication platform, including Twitter and Facebook. Then, follow these four steps to leverage Twitter and turn a crisis into a new opportunity.

1.     Use a Human Touch

Nothing is more frustrating than talking to an automated voice response system when you call a company. Don’t make the same mistake with Twitter! Actively engage with followers as if they’re speaking to you in person. If you have more to say than what 140 characters will allow, include your personal email address for follow-up conversations.

2.     Create a Hashtag

As soon as a crisis hits, establish a basic hashtag to use for tweets related to the issue. Keep it short and simple so your audience can send a message without going over Twitter’s 140-character limit. By establishing a customized hashtag, you’ll be able to more accurately monitor conversations as they spread across the Web.

3.     Be Transparent

Be honest and share new details as you get them, especially on Twitter. If a team member makes a mistake, own it and apologize to those who caught the issue. Lack of transparency will only lead to further issues down the line.

 4.     Monitor Influencers and Journalists

Once a crisis hits, assess which influencers you’re tracking and their current sentiment towards your brand. By doing so, you’ll be ready to respond should they change the course of their conversation. Similarly, look out for journalists scoping Twitter for sources. The quicker you reach out to journalists with information about your brand’s resolution plan, the less likely you’ll have to respond to unfavorable news articles and commentary.

How else can you squash crises? Click here to watch our free on-demand webinar “Crush Crises Before They Start” now!

About Katie Gaab

Katie Gaab is a content marketing specialist for Cision. Previously the senior editor for Help A Reporter Out (HARO), she enjoys connecting audiences to exciting, new content. She's a dancer, avid concert-goer, foreign language nerd and book worm. Find her on Twitter @kathryngaab.

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