The President Tweets At You - What Are Your Next Steps?

March 16, 2017 - By Chris Britton - The President of the United States just called out your company in a tweet.

Your world is rocking and everyone from customers to investors want to know what you are going to do.

It’s an experience shared by an increasing number of companies. Just ask Nordstrom, Lockheed Martin and Amazon, among many others.

Maybe you are lucky and you updated your crisis preparedness plan recently. Maybe.

Or just as likely it was last revised some time ago. And the planning process certainly did not anticipate anything like this. 

Heck, even the crisis team members listed in the plan seem to have left the company. So now you are scrambling to pull together a team to develop a response. But there’s no template, no guidelines. Nothing like this has ever happened before. Meanwhile, investors are abandoning your stock, the media is rife with wild speculation and every stakeholder important to your future is looking to you for an answer.

Technology allows the President to talk directly to his 26.2 million Twitter followers, which is then amplified by retweets, shares and the news media. Technology can also mitigate the issues.

This is not a phenomenon created by good or bad media coverage – reporters are trailing behind the story trying to make sense of it. We are in a new world of technology-driven risk and we need a new form of response.

Take Social Media really, REALLY seriously

The first and most obvious area to address is your social media capabilities. Social media is now a serious business. Tweets from the leader of the free world dramatically underline the point, but it was happening anyway.

Those who wish to disrupt your business do so by gathering together in virtual communities and galvanizing direct action among thousands of like-minded people. Social media makes the playing field very level for the disgruntled with the large, well-resourced corporations whose business they wish to disrupt. Think NGOs, dissatisfied customers, alienated communities and angry former employees.

Oddly, last year this approach was used by consumers to boycott companies that carry the products of the Trump Organization after a Californian digital brand strategist came up with the idea of #GrabMyWallet.

At the same time, Trump supporters used technology to galvanize opposition for companies who they felt were critical of their candidate, companies which included Starbucks, Oreos, GrubHub and Netflix.

This would be a really good time to ensure you had deep, experienced and well-resourced capabilities in listening, monitoring, responding and managing your interactions with key stakeholders via social media.

Technology that makes your response fast and agile

The other key area of technology is about how you access and activate your crisis plan.

When that Presidential tweet bursts into the world at 4am on a holiday weekend, the old way has you scrambling to find where the latest version of the crisis plan is kept. And hope to goodness that your IT network allows off-site access to the company intranet.

Or you can reach for the one device you always have with you. Your smartphone.

With a few simple clicks, you alert everyone in the company who needs to know. You’ve shared the tweet and early online reaction. You have instantly accessed company resources and information that is needed to build a response. And you’ve got the team together for a call in 15 minutes complete with dial-in numbers.

We’re biased. RockDove created the In Case of Crisis app that can make all this happen. And a whole lot of other stuff you would need when that Tweet rocks your world.

In a world where technology creates the opportunity for unprecedented and unexpected disruption to your business, the least you could do is to ensure you have technology on your side in the response.

Originally Posted on