This past Sunday, the American Music Awards took place in Hollywood, CA and they were nothing short of jaw-dropping, controversial and inspiring. I curled up with a blanket with my cup of coffee in hand and my laptop open ready to begin tweeting. Yes, I prepared to watch one of my favorite award shows with my Twitter open, ready to tweet the night away.
Whenever I get ready for an evening of award show watching, I have found myself taking to Twitter more and more to see what the “Twittersphere” is saying. When I attended the 2013 VMAs and witnessed Miley Cyrus’ performance first hand, I was unable to see what others were tweeting in real time. The first thing I did when I came home was check Twitter and see what the folks at home were saying.
Katy Perry’s performance of her new single “Unconditionally” was the first performance of the night, and the geisha-inspired performance was controversial. Many tweets were sent about the performance while it was occurring, mentioning that it was racist and very insensitive. My mind went into PR mode, and I had to wonder if anyone on her team was on social media monitoring what people were saying about her performance and if they were going into crisis management mode.
I watch music award shows as if I was the manager of an artist; I can’t help it. I’ve often thought about what an artist’s management team does while they are performing; do they watch the performance, talk to the media? I suppose something they could do, or at least should do, is monitor Twitter, in real time, and see what their at-home audience is saying.
In one of my intro to public relations classes, my professor said that in PR, you must be “proactive, not reactive”. By monitoring Twitter in real time, music managers and other industry professionals can prepare to handle a crisis immediately. They might even see that a crisis is beginning when they didn’t expect one to occur, and that’s being PR-proactive.