Using Social Media to Protect Your Reputation

Reputation management through social media is a hot topic right now. In fact, digital crisis communications was the topic of one of the best panels I saw at Blogworld Expo last week (more on that panel soon).

With that in mind, I thought you might like to hear an interview I just did with Andrew Brown and Robert Gold at BusinessCast, on the subject of “using social media to protect your reputation.”

BusinessCast Episode 171 – Using Social Media to Protect Your Reputation

The Challenge

Rather than a typical interview format, Andrew and Robert threw me into a scenario:

A Canadian-based financial services company has launched a campaign that renews one of its seasonal consumer-based investment products (e.g. RRSPs). They have spent their resources on traditional media (including television, radio, direct mail, in-branch literature and outbound telemarketing) as well as leveraged their permission-based email program, search engine marketing and ad-buys on some well-known consumer sites (e.g. national and local newspapers as well as investment sites).

Everything seems to be going on as expected but, then they get thrown a curve ball: Four days ago their call centre started receiving a dramatic increase in calls revealing that a message is floating across Facebook that their investment product is somehow unreliable. At the same time, one of the SVPs has just seen that a local financial community influencer with nearly 10,000 loyal Twitter followers has just posted a message slamming the product. Finally, the spill-over is having an impact on in-branch conversations with consumers as well as in the B2B areas of the bank.

They then posed seven questions to me:

  • What are the most immediate actions that you would advise the company to take?
  • What is the best way to evaluate the damage done to the reputation of the brand and its product?
  • What can the company do to make sure that there is little spill-over into other areas of the its business?
  • What are the measures of success that you would recommend to demonstrate success?
  • What kind of timetable is required to execute the key recommendations?
  • In what areas are the major hard dollar costs associated with the key recommendations?
  • What are the most common knee-jerk reaction activities that the company should avoid taking?

Check out the interview above, or over at BusinessCast.

Let me know what you think of my responses!

(Image: Shutterstock)

Dave Fleet
Managing Director and Head of Global Digital Crisis at Edelman. Husband and dad of two. Cycling nut; bookworm; videogamer; Britnadian. Opinions are mine, not my employer's.