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Radio Roundtable: Social crises on the rise, Deals as part of PR toolkit?, and when to automate

Radio Roundtable: Social crises on the rise, Deals as part of PR toolkit?, and when to automate

This week, Bryan Person was back for another round as co-host on the Radio Roundtable. We discussed the Altimeter Group’s report on social crises and the business hierarchy of needs, whether an understanding of daily deals needs to be part of the PR toolkit, and when (or if) to use software to automate Tweets.


This week’s show is 34 minutes long.

  • First, Bryan and I tackle the very meaty and interesting Altimeter Report on social crises. There’s a lot to look at here, and we barely scratched the surface on the show so I hope people will take a look at the report. We looked at how preparing for a social media crisis has morphed from an early-days adage of “monitor and respond when appropriate” to the need for a full-blown crisis plan, like the Altimeter group is recommending. I question if this is all too much for some businesses, especially small to mid-sized companies that simply do not (and will not) have the staff to implement what is suggested. Bryan points out that the audience is probably enterprise-level companies, but that there’s plenty in the report smaller companies can learn from adapt to their own needs. We also take a look at the top reasons for a social crisis, and the number one reason–exposure to a poor experience–is one of those items that is controllable by a company. Fixing broken customer care processes might take time, but when companies can address the root problem (a poor customer experience) in the right way, the likelihood of a social crisis diminishes.
  • Next, we take a look at one PR blogger’s recommendation that online deals be “added to the PR toolkit.” I take issue with the blogger’s stated reason for inclusion, which seems to be more about a turf issue between PR and advertising than a real explanation as to how the inclusion of “daily deals” in a PR strategy is a logical move. Bryan notes that a local company in Austin has successfully woven daily deals into their overall strategy. We then discuss how the recent decline in interest in daily deals, and the exiting from the space of Facebook and Yelp, might impact the overall market. Bryan notes that attempts to link daily deals with location might better serve user’s interests. I agree, and note that I am inundated with deals that I have no interest in (kid’s dance classes) or are too far for me to use regularly (Boston).
  • Finally, we revisit the topic of automation of Tweets. This will continue to be an evolving issue, and while I’m leery of using too much automation (I actually don’t use it at all–yet), I understand there’s a place for it. No one wants to be tied to the computer 24/7, but it definitely helps to space time between Tweets. Bryan gives a perfect example of when it is useful, such as promoting SXSW panels. If he’d loaded all 50 Tweets on panels at the same time, it would not have been as effective as stretching the posts out over the course of a week. I agree, but point out that scheduling Tweets has drawbacks too–such as scheduled Tweets about something sales-y might feel very out of place if/when a natural disaster occurs.
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About The Author

Jennifer Zingsheim Phillips is the Director of Marketing Communications for CARMA. She is also the founder of 4L Strategies, and has worked in communications and public affairs for more than 20 years. Her background includes work in politics, government, lobbying, public affairs PR, content creation, and digital and social communications and media analysis.

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