Search engine crisis management

If you have a high-profile problem—let's say your products have been exploding into flame—how do you get your message to customers who want more information? Obviously, you need to handle the product issues—set up the recall or whatever, issue a press release, and get your customer service operation ready to handle the influx. If you have a blog, you write about it there. Kate Zimmermann suggests using search marketing for damage control:

  1. Run a search marketing campaign on generic, branded AND local keywords.

  2. Run contextual ads on industry-specific sites.

  3. Send ad traffic to landing pages that are specific to the recall.

  4. Point to local options.

  5. Provide an immediate point of customer service.

See the full post for the details.

This is a really good idea. Sony's already taken the hit for its exploding battery recall; now the company has to focus on making things right and repairing its image. Contextual ads will put the company's message with the information customers are looking for as they research the topic and, possibly, decide what to do about their own computers and batteries. Show the ad to the right person at the right time. Perfect.

Search marketers probably see this as the obvious reaction, but for everyone else, it's a helpful reminder of another new tool for marketers to get their message out in a crisis.


About Nathan Gilliatt

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  • Voracious learner and explorer. Analyst tracking technologies and markets in intelligence, analytics and social media. Advisor to buyers, sellers and investors. Writing my next book.
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