How to avoid a social media management crisis and what to do if one hits

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Ah, social media. What a wonderful, social, interactive, freedom-of-speech-encouraging thing.

Anyone and everyone can pretty much post whatever they like, whenever they like and however they like.

This freedom that social media offers works just great for social media marketing companies. We can build your brand’s social media presence and develop your brand’s voice effortlessly. We have the freedom to share the content you want people to see, and then to make sure people see it all while making you look really, really cool.

But sometimes, despite our best efforts and your approval, someone somewhere may not think you look really cool all the time. That someone might even post something to you, publicly, for everyone to see.

And that’s the reality of our social media ruled world. But it doesn’t mean that we let nit-pickers and naysayers define our brands.


There are many ways to manage and avoid a social media management crisis, and it usually begins with social media agency-level planning.

With every new post, campaign, caption and product launch consider all the kinds of people who will see the content, who it is you are trying to impress and question if there is anyone who may be upset.

Monitor what is already being said about your brand online and use both the positive and negative feedback to grow as social media marketers and use it to develop future campaigns. Check what consumers are saying about competitors too, as it can help you avoid the same mistakes that they made. Community management is a crucial part of successful social media management. We mentioned that social media lets anyone make comments anywhere about anything. That means prospective customers can read these comments and deter from your brand.


Platforms like Google and Facebook encourage users to leave reviews and don’t let companies tamper with the reviews left promoting brand transparency.  In response to unfavourable comments always address the issue head-on and provide a viable solution. This way your brand doesn’t just show professionalism and honesty, but it also demonstrates that your brand cares about its customers.  

A critical tactic to implement in your social media management strategy is to make sure every person in your social media agency has easy access to all account login details.

As social media marketing companies we schedule a lot of content, and one time someone might miss a spelling mistake or misguided post. To ensure that these small mistakes are rectified before they can leave an impact, all employees should be able to make the necessary edits faster than they can message ‘omg you accidentally spelt duck as f*ck, delete this quick!!!!’.

These steps should already be an integral part of every social media management plan, but sometimes social media marketing companies can forget that just because their team loves it, doesn’t mean everyone else will.

Whether it be in the form of a disgruntled customer or an accidentally offensive campaign, if you find your brand in a social media management crisis, there are steps you can take to save face.


One: Take a moment to calculate the damage, then respond FAST.

Pause all of your queued content, delete whatever it is that caused offence and say sorry to those who cared stat! Asses if the crisis is something that can be dealt with on the down low, or if you need to release a company apology.  

Two: Read the room.

Consider who you offended and why it was upsetting then reply accordingly. Sometimes it’s best to take a humorous, conversational approach and sometimes you should be responding like a lawyer (or with a lawyer, yikes!).

Three: You did the crime, now do the time.

Own up to your mistakes. No one is going to respect a brand who can’t accept they did something wrong. Even if you might not think you should be saying sorry, your potential customers do. They probably aren’t going to buy your services unless you say sorry like you mean it.

Four: Turn that duck up into a lesson.

People love a good come back story. If you can find a clever way to turn your crisis into a marketing campaign, then you’re well on the track to respect and rectification.

Dealing with a social media management crisis can seem like a really big headache. So how does never having to deal with a crisis at all sound? By hiring a social media agency to do all of your social work you can rest assured that your social media management rests with creative, capable hands.

Red Herring Digital is a social media agency in Melbourne. We can help you turn your brand into the number one choice for your customers. Contact us today for a no strings attached social media audit.

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Curious to see how your digital marketing stacks up?

Let the pros give you a free audit.