Will Scott on Digital Disaster Plans for the Tampa Business Journal

October 26th, 2022 by Collin Guedon

Key Insights:

  • Before a natural disaster occurs, audit where your customers find your business online so you have documented which channels to update in the aftermath.
  • Be intentional with your messaging after a natural disaster, and demonstrate empathy.
  • When you reintroduce your marketing strategy after a natural disaster, plan it at a steady pace that allows you to be nimble if there are any further developments in the recovery proces

On October 21, 2022, following the aftermath of Hurricane Ian, Search Influence CEO and Co-founder Will Scott wrote for the Tampa Bay Business Journal about the importance of businesses reconnecting with customers after a natural disaster to provide accurate operational information.

While this article is only available to Tampa Bay Business Journal subscribers, we believe this information is vital for all businesses.

Read on to learn how to craft a better digital disaster plan for your company.

Waves crashing onto beach during a hurricane

Essential Steps for Businesses Following a Natural Disaster

Step 1

Take an audit.

Where do your customers find your business? Make a list of all the places where you need to update your digital presence, including but not limited to:

  • Social media
  • Website
  • Email blasts
  • Google My Business profile
  • Yelp

Hopefully, before the storm, you also made sure the inventory of your digital channels was up to date.

Step 2

Be intentional in your messaging, and demonstrate empathy.

In the wake of a storm, emotions are high. Your customer can experience any range of feelings, from the joy that it is over to devastation from personal loss and everything in between.

As you craft messaging to deploy on your owned channels, make sure it resonates with your audience and provides them with as much information as possible. Think through what information would be helpful rather than just saying you’re open.

Also, you’ll need to continue to demonstrate that empathy as long as the community does. When the community begins to rally, reintroduce marketing tactics you had in place prior to the weather event.

Step 3

Begin to reinstate your digital marketing plan.

Reintroduce your marketing plan at a steady pace to still allow you to be nimble if any further developments occur in the recovery process.

When making your plan, think through your team and who you can assign to do what. Make sure these folks have access to logins and technology to do what they have to do. And verify they understand the message you want to put out there.

If you are not sure what to say, this blog post can help with crafting content.

Learn More About Digital Disaster Planning

As a business founded and headquartered in New Orleans — a city no stranger to natural disasters — we take pride in helping our clients craft sincere and agile digital disaster messaging.

Fill out our online form to learn how our digital marketing services can assist your business before, during, and after disaster strikes.