This has been a pretty bum week here for the U.S. And while I’m supposed to be writing and focused, I just can’t seem to be. I’m distracted, anxious and my heart feels heavy for what’s happening in the world. And you might feel the same, or your readers might! So should be you blogging, tweeting, instagramming and going on as normal during times of crisis? And what, if anything, should you say? I spoke with a few Pros to weigh in with their thoughts on blogging & social commentary during times of crisis.
Blogging During Times of Crisis
What, if anything, should you say? Here, a few experts weigh in.
Brands need to be sure that previously scheduled content doesn’t seem insensitive. —Alisha Jons, Lish Creative
“As a social media manager it is extremely important to keep an eye on the news and current events. They can provide real-time opportunities, (think Oreo’s Superbowl blackout “you can still dunk in the dark” viral tweet) but also threats, especially in the wake of a tragedy. In an age of social media scheduling, brands and their social media managers need to be sure that previously scheduled content doesn’t seem insensitive. If the previously scheduled post is extremely frivolous and upbeat, for example, and your community is in mourning, it is best to push back that content to a later date.
As far as addressing tragedy head on, I typically recommend that brands stay neutral on all social, political and cultural issues unless they are directly correlated to their greater brand mission and values.”
Unless these controversial and often heart-breaking topics are in support of your core values or brand beliefs, you should keep your thoughts offline. —Jessica Howell, Social Studio Shop
“The gravity of throwing your “two-cents” into the ring can be detrimental to your brand and your business and it should not be taken lightly. My firm belief is that unless the discussion of these controversial and often heart-breaking topics are in support of your core values or your brand beliefs, you should keep your thoughts offline!
It’s important to know that the majority of social media users are turning to these platforms to be entertained in some form or another. Whether it’s scrolling through their Facebook feed to see another hilarious cat video or checking their Snap stories to see which Lip Kit Kylie Jenner is sporting today, they seek an escape. Although they may turn toward news-focused platforms such as Twitter to find out what’s happening right now, you should be very careful about joining in on the more debatable discussions.
We all have the ability to say whatever we want when we want, but it’s important to “think before you Tweet” otherwise you could be alienating part of your audience and turning them away from ever trusting you again or wanting to do business with you. Our rule of thumb here at Social Studio Shop is, if you have to think twice about it– you probably shouldn’t post about it.”
Do what is right for your business. And if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. —Melissa, Hebbe, melissahebbe.com
“My feeling about small business owners responding to a critical current event, such as the recent shootings, is that they need to do what is right for their business. Some choose to comment, some choose not to. I personally do not comment from my business because I feel that my business doesn’t have a place to. As a person or individual, it’s a totally different story.
That said, I do believe in if you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all. Many will hide behind screen names and a computer commenting truly hurtful things in an already terrible situation. There is no need for that.”