It was just a month ago, almost to the day, when the Twitterverse exploded with news that the lights went out during the Super Bowl game. 231,500 Tweets per Minute (TPM) to be exact. Okay, I admit the Beyoncé half-time show generated over 5 million Tweets, but Super Bowl XLVII will be remembered for its period of darkness, perhaps more so than the game itself.
Entergy New Orleans, the utility company powering the Superdome, quickly went into crises management mode. After all, they’ve had lots of communications experience powering the storm laden Gulf coast and southern states, and most notably having dealt with Hurricane Katrina which devastated New Orleans back in August, 2005.
Social media has changed crises communications forever. The old way of assembling the crises team and calling in the PR firm to craft a corporate statement for a newswire service is so yesterday. You need to act swiftly, recognizing the hyper velocity and amplification of social networks!
Let’s look at the Entergy response to the crises which exhibits five key principles in crises management that are applicable to all companies: