Website Crash Resolved: More Crisis Lessons

by PR Coach on April 9, 2013

Bluehost tech support excellent

Website crash resolved

When I last posted, it was about 12 hours after my website crashed. I shared some of the lessons about how I handled the initial crisis in this post: PR Coach Website & Blog Crash: Now What?

To recap quickly, when my website and WordPress blog went out of service, I used several alternate social media channels to communicate with my readers.

While my hosting service Bluehost worked on the problem, I was able to communicate using Twitter, Scoop.it and Tumblr.

Not perfect, but effective enough and timely. I got many supportive comments from readers and online friends thanking me for the crisis lessons and the update.

48 Hours Later, Bluehost Support Solves the Website Issue

After one day, my online presence was still out of action. Frustrating. Out of contact. And challenging because the technical solutions were far beyond my skills. I went to bed Friday night with no idea how long I’d be incommunicado and when or if my problem would be solved.

The next morning an 8:00 AM e-mail made my day. Bluehost tech support advised my site was now up and running again.

In less than 48 hours they had recovered and restored my websites and blog. That’s service! And that’s why they’ve been my web hosting provider since 2001.

The backup restored the blog to one week earlier. All that was lost were three blog posts, easily reposted, and a small number of PR Library archive articles.

More Website and Social Media Lessons

Just to wrap up the incident, here are several additional lessons to help you in a similar crisis in the future:

  1. Review your website hosting backup services. Most web hosts provide free or very low cost backups of your precious database and information.
  2. If you upload or enter new, important information, don’t wait for the automated backup. Backup files and data manually, immediately to protect yourself.
  3. Pick an alternate social media channel to communicate with your readers, clients and prospects. Tumblr, Twitter and Scoop.it were each invaluable for me.

Globe and Mail Tumblr site helped in an outageRecently, the Globe and Mail, a major national Canadian newspaper, also used Tumblr when it’s website crashed. It worked wonderfully during their emergency and you can see their Tumblr blog or read about it here.

The beauty is many other social media channels are dead simple to use for blog posting. I alsouse them as an important part of my social PR thought leadership curation strategy. I share important news and links to articles of interest to PR, marketing and social media professionals.

I just never expected to have to use them in a crisis.

I’m lucky to have escaped with minimal impact to my social PR business. Without planning, you may not be so lucky in the future, regardless of the size of your organization.

For me, I’ll be treading more carefully next time I make changes to the backend of my websites and databases. Thankfully, regular posting will resume shortly.

Author: Jeff Domansky

Visual: Globe and Mail