What Role Should A Digital Marketing Team Have In Managing A Crisis

A crisis can happen at any time and in any place. Crises are not limited to natural disasters or accidents, but they also happen as a result of human error. 

This is why every organization needs to have a crisis management plan to be prepared for anything that might happen. However, if you want your company to survive a crisis, then it is also important that you have an effective digital marketing team by your side.

How to Put a Social Media Crisis management Plan in Place
Digital marketing teams play a crucial role
in managing crises effectively. They are
responsible for monitoring online
conversations, providing real-time updates,
and maintaining a positive online presence
during challenging situations. Being
prepared and having a crisis management
plan in place can help businesses
effectively navigate through crises,
maintain their reputation, and retain trust
with customers and stakeholders.


Accountability is an important role for the digital marketing team. The team should be able to take responsibility for their actions, answer questions about what happened, and explain what went wrong.

For example, if your company’s product was recalled because it had a faulty part that caused burns to customers, the digital marketing team should be accountable for explaining this to stakeholders and working with them on how to mitigate the crisis.

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The digital marketing team should help the company understand the crisis and the impact it could have on the business.

By understanding how a crisis is affecting your business, you can better gauge how to respond to it. The digital marketing team should also be able to identify any potential negative effects of a crisis on social media channels and other online platforms, such as customer service reviews or SEO rankings. 

This information will help you prepare for what may happen next in terms of managing customer perception of your brand, as well as ensuring that you’re prepared if someone turns up at your location with guns blazing (which happens more often than we’d like to think).


You need to get your team on the same page and, most importantly, respond quickly. This means that your digital marketing team needs to be ready for a crisis at any time. You need people who are not only available in real-time but also visible and transparent.

When responding to a crisis, it is important to:

  • Be honest with consumers
  • Be consistent in messaging across all platforms
  • Take a proactive approach

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Your actions should be authentic, transparent, and consistent. This means being honest and genuine as well as empathetic to the feelings of others. You also need to be flexible and responsive in your responses during a crisis.

Be proactive in identifying potential risks that could harm your brand or company before they become problems and always conduct regular risk assessments so you can mitigate any negative impact on your organization’s reputation when something does go wrong.


As the organization works to restore its credibility, it must be transparent about what happened, honest about the impact and cause, and completely honest about its solutions. They also need to be clear on when they will have a solution in place.


Trust is the cornerstone of good crisis management. It is the core value that must drive every other aspect of your efforts. If you lack trust from your customers and stakeholders, then nothing else will matter.

If you want to build trust with your audience, consider transparency as a crucial component for success. Transparency means being open about what’s happening when things go wrong or when there are problems in the public eye that need attention for example:

  • Be upfront about what happened and what steps you’re taking to remedy it.
  • Don’t try to hide anything from people; instead, be honest about what happened and explain how it happened (if possible).

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Empathy is the ability to understand and share another person’s feelings. In crisis management, empathy means understanding that those affected by the crisis are likely experiencing many emotions, including confusion, fear, anger, and embarrassment. 

This can be challenging for a digital marketing team because they may not know the people involved personally or professionally. However, it’s important to remember that individuals can be impacted differently by a crisis depending on their personality type and how they react when faced with uncertainty or the risk of failure. For example:

A person who experiences more anxiety will likely have difficulty processing information quickly without feeling overwhelmed. They might need more time alone after receiving bad news so they can process what just happened before talking about it with others (or even call someone for support).

A person who experiences more depression may feel hopeless about ever recovering from this situation which can lead them down an unhealthy path like substance abuse or self-harm (both physical and emotional). It’s important for everyone else around him/her not only to recognize these signs but also to help provide support through counseling sessions if needed!


In crisis management, consistency is critical. You must be consistent with your messaging, with yourself, and with others.

Consistency in messaging: where you stand on an issue should be communicated at all times. If there is any wavering or hesitation from the brand’s position, it will hurt its reputation tremendously as it looks like you don’t know what you’re doing.

Consistency within yourself: whatever happens in the future should never contradict what has already been said by yourself and/or other members of your team. 

This is especially important if you have multiple spokespeople who are saying different things about an event or situation that happened recently, this could confuse customers who may then think that something went wrong internally within the company.

Consistency between departments: avoid contradicting anything being said by other departments within your organization.

Consistency between external parties: make sure everyone agrees on their message before communicating externally (i.e., make sure internal communications match external ones).

Awareness Of The Current Situation

In the early days of a crisis, it’s important to have an awareness of all three elements: what is being said about you, who is saying it, and how it’s being said.

What is being said? This can include comments on social media, blog posts, or other online comment sections.

Who is saying it? Who are these people? Are they credible sources? Have they been involved in similar conversations before? Do their comments reflect how you would like your brand to be perceived by consumers?

How is this information being presented and should anything change about how that information is communicated going forward?

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Stakeholders Involved

Once you know your stakeholders, you can assess their involvement in the crisis and how best to involve them.

Who are the stakeholders involved? This is a group that has an interest in what happens with a particular issue. It includes internal employees, such as marketers and salespeople, but it might also include external groups such as customers or investors.

Stakeholders have different roles: They might be affected by the issue, affected by its resolution, or responsible for resolving it. 

They also have different interests: Some might want things to go back to normal (their interests) while others might prefer that there be no more issues after this one (their goals). These factors affect how much control each stakeholder has over the situation at hand and what they’re willing to do about it!

Brand Reputation

Brand reputation is the image or feeling that a company creates in the minds of its customers. It’s built on the quality of its products or services, customer experience, and reputation as a company.

When a crisis happens, it can have negative consequences on a brand’s reputation by affecting consumers’ perception of that brand. How well the digital marketing team handles this crisis will determine whether they manage to maintain or even improve their customers’ perception of their business which could mean more sales in the long run!

The Financial Impact

The first step in minimizing the financial impact of a crisis is to have a plan in place before it happens. It’s difficult to determine exactly how much money could be lost due to a crisis, but the more prepared you are beforehand, the better your chances of recovering quickly and cheaply.

You should also educate your employees about how they can help prevent or mitigate damage by spotting signs of distress among customers (such as stress) and reporting them before they escalate into something more serious. This way they won’t need expensive training later on if at all!

Reputation Crises.

Reputation crises have become a significant driver of digital marketing in the age of social media. 

The internet has enabled companies to broadcast their messages directly to their customers, as well as allow consumers to post feedback and complaints on review sites like Yelp and TripAdvisor. 

In addition to these traditional channels of communication, social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter have given consumers a way to voice their opinions on corporate brands in real-time.

This phenomenon has led many businesses to take a proactive approach 

When it comes to managing their reputation online by monitoring ongoing conversations about them through software tools such as Brand24 or Talkwalker Alerts (formerly Social Mention) that provide insights into how people are talking about them across various sources including blogs, forums, and news articles around the world.

Strategic Crisis Management Plan

The most important part of your crisis management plan is the ability to be flexible. Your team should be able to make quick decisions, and adapt your plan accordingly. This can be tested by running simulations of potential crises and how you would respond to them.

If you’re on top of things and reviewing your plan regularly, then every time something major changes in your business or industry (like a new competitor), it’s time for another review. If there’s a major issue that seems like it could affect the business if not addressed quickly (e.g., an employee is arrested), then also schedule a review at that time as well.

Risk Mitigation Plan.

A risk mitigation plan is the first place to start when it comes to crisis management. It’s a documented plan of action to reduce the risks and manage your company’s reputation in times of crisis. If you don’t have one, you could be putting your business at great financial and reputational risk.

A good risk mitigation plan will help you identify what aspects of your business are vulnerable during a crisis, as well as ways in which those vulnerabilities can be remedied so that they don’t hurt your brand reputation. It also helps you measure how prepared your organization needs to be for any potential issues that might arise from these vulnerabilities.

The key difference between a crisis management plan and a risk mitigation plan is that while the former focuses on responding effectively when something goes wrong, the latter focuses on preventing problems from occurring altogether or at least minimizing their impact once they’ve occurred. 

You may need both depending on where your organization falls within its lifecycle; for example, A startup would likely only need a crisis management plan until it has matured into an established enterprise with more resources available (and thus less likely that anything unexpected will happen).

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While it’s impossible to predict every possible crisis, a strong team and an effective plan should help you weather the storm. 

It’s also important to note that managing a crisis is often a collaborative effort; working together with your team and other stakeholders, such as internal communications teams or legal representatives, will ensure that your company can handle any situation in stride. 

The best way to keep your brand safe from scandal? Stay vigilant about what could go wrong and be prepared for any scenario!

Further Reading

5 Crisis Management Tips for Your Digital Marketing: Learn five valuable tips to effectively manage crises in your digital marketing campaigns and maintain a positive online presence.

Crisis Management Quiz: Test your knowledge of crisis management with this interactive quiz to enhance your understanding of handling challenging situations.

Why Digital Marketing Should Be Part of Your Crisis Management: Discover the importance of integrating digital marketing into your crisis management strategies and how it can positively impact your overall crisis response.


What are the key elements of crisis management?

Crisis management involves preparation, communication, and response. Identifying potential crises, creating response plans, and effectively communicating with stakeholders are crucial elements.

How can digital marketing teams contribute to crisis management?

Digital marketing teams can assist in crisis management by monitoring online conversations, providing real-time updates, and maintaining a positive online presence during challenging situations.

How do you handle a social media crisis?

Handling a social media crisis requires swift and transparent communication, acknowledging the issue, offering solutions, and actively engaging with the audience to address concerns.

Why is a crisis management plan essential for businesses?

A crisis management plan helps businesses respond effectively to unexpected events, mitigates potential damage to reputation, and maintains trust with customers and stakeholders.

How can businesses learn from past crises?

Studying past crises helps businesses identify vulnerabilities, understand what worked and what didn’t, and develop strategies to improve their crisis management approach in the future.