So a TOI blog wrote about Haagen Dazs’ ‘Exclusive Preview for International Travellers’ banner it got almost 800 comments pouring in and a stream of Twitter discussions in wave of protest. There is also this story about the online protests. What do I take away from this?
a. The immense influence media blogs have today – Yes, we have big bloggers and we have media bloggers, the latter that have come out recently but yielding the reach of its already established brand platforms
b. Crisis can broke out online and it’s not something we read about a brand in the US, it’s happening here – We saw this during the Mumbai attacks last year when the news was first reported on Twitter. Now we have a blog covering the story, irrespective of it from a media house.
c. The potential danger of giving out a diplomatically worded media statement in a crisis instead of being genuine. The media statement of yesteryears need to change.
Once for an internal newsletter, I was asked, how is the internet changing issues and crisis management. I was thinking about what I wrote apply so aptly on this particular situation.
Critics, customers, activists, and other influencers today have the opportunity and the tools online to easily voice their opinions across to many people. They can rally supporters online who in turn can help an issue turn viral across networks and communities. Seemingly unharmful online discussions can spiral into crisis situations for organizations in no time and participants can quickly take sides to an issue.
Another important emerging trend is real time reportage. When Mumbai was under terrorist attacks in November last year, it was the consumer generated online media like Twitter and Flickr that broke the news. Digital communicators today need to think quickly, be an active listener, and understand the culture of the online communities where influencers are active at. Organisations on their part need to provide their digital communicators the authority to engage with online influencers, especially during crisis situations, without having to go through lengthy approval processes.