We are happy to announce that Melissa Agnes will be joining us today for our Expert Interview series. Melissa specializes in crisis response, prevention, planning and training for the digital age.
Working with national organizations and global enterprises, Melissa offers a variety of specialized services that help today’s biggest and brightest brands prepare for, prevent and overcome any type of crisis situation.
7 Questions on Social Media With Melissa Agnes
1. How did you get your start in the industry?
It all happened rather naturally, actually. I used to have a web strategy company where we would do everything from website development to social media marketing strategies – you name it. A little over 3 years ago I began getting calls from clients and prospective clients who were facing situations that they’d never faced before – social media crises! As I helped each client overcome the situation I realized three things:
1) I was awesome at crisis management!
2) I thoroughly enjoyed it, finding a passion in a talent that I didn’t know I had; and
3) There was a gap in the market. There were very few people focused on meeting this growing need.
From there, I took it upon myself to learn everything I could and, in January 2012, I decided to make it my fulltime job.
Today I get the privilege of working with some of the biggest and brightest brands in the world, helping them prevent, plan for and manage a wide range of crisis and issue situations.
2. What is the biggest challenge facing your industry?
I’m going to rephrase this with “what is the biggest challenge that today’s organizations face?”
The biggest challenge that many of today’s organizations currently face is being able to adapt their corporate culture and their crisis management plans and trainings to really meet today’s crisis management realities. For example: embracing the 10 new rules of crisis communications, and enabling and empowering their teams to publicly respond to a crisis within 15 – 60 minutes from it originating.
One of my missions is to make this challenge, yet necessary task, more easily adaptable within the organization’s corporate culture. I’ve been successful, but there’s still a lot of work to be done!
3. What is the method to your blogging success? What inspires your blogs?
My readers and clients inspire my blog. Above, I mentioned one of my missions. Opening eyes and providing organizations with tools, strategies and guidelines for enabling their team to manage and positively overcome any type of crisis situation is what my blog’s focus is. And the feedback I get from my readers inspires and motivates me to keep on blogging!
4. What do you think is the future of social media?
Connectivity. Interactivity. Voices. Risk and Opportunity.
5. What advice would you give to someone who is just starting out?
If your organization is just starting to realize the impact that social media and the online world have on your brand’s reputation and bottom line, you’re on the right track and here’s my advice to you:
- Always focus on building, rebuilding and/or strengthening the relationship you share with your stakeholders. If you always focus on this, you will always lead your organization in the right direction.
- Work with a crisis management professional who specializes in crisis management for this digital age. Have them conduct some vulnerability audits, develop a crisis management plan and train your staff. These tasks are more important than they ever were since every issue and crisis has a global reach today, and they all have the ability to go viral in mere minutes.
6. Where can we find you on the web/on Twitter/Facebook/etc.?
There are tons of places for you to find me on the web – and I love interacting, engaging, so don’t hesitate to reach out and say hello!
7. What do you think is the most important takeaway from your session?
The most important takeaway from my session is the importance of enabling your team to be able to properly utilize Twitter in a crisis, before a crisis strikes. My session is filled with valuable information, takeaways, strategies and actionable steps that you won’t want you to miss! Enjoy it and don’t be shy to reach out with questions or feedback after you’ve watched it!
You can hear from Melissa and other great presenters at our virtual event from November 11th – 22nd. Please visit the #LEARNDigital page for more information. Click here to read more interviews from our presenters.