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SONAR Real-Time, Multi-Language, Multi-Country Social Media Crisis Simulation Platform Launches in Asia-Pacific


HONG KONG, CHINA Ruder Finn Asia (www.ruderfinnasia.com), the leading Asia-Pacific communications consultancy, today launched SONAR (“SONAR”), the firm’s new multi-language, multi-market, multi-channel social media crisis simulation platform. Developed in partnership with Hong Kong digital marketing firm Daylight Partnership (www.daylightpartnership.com), SONAR allows client teams to experience the dynamic environment of a fast-developing social media issue or crisis in real-time.

Replicating the most popular social media platforms in a client’s specific market, SONAR has the ability to operate in any language (including Chinese (Simplified and Traditional), Hindi, Bahasa, Korean, Japanese and English) with client teams tasked with analyzing and managing emerging threats using online and offline resources.

With no “right or wrong” answers, SONAR adapts and evolves based on the decisions made by the client team exactly as in real-life, with real-time responses and reactions made by a team of social media role players. SONAR simulates Weibo, WeChat, Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Instagram, Twitter and numerous other social media channels, with the precise portfolio being market-dependent: in China the SONAR platform is built around a different social media landscape to that of India or Singapore. Social media posts, online news reports, TV reports, netizen controversy and community criticism are replicated just as in real-life through the SONAR system.

At the end of a SONAR session, clients are much clearer about where they responded well and what gaps or weaknesses exist. Leadership teams also are clear what needs to be changed and implemented to ensure organisations respond swiftly and professionally to any future social media crisis.

“From a client perspective, SONAR is as real as it gets”, said Daniel Quek, VP, Corporate Affairs at Cerebos Pacific Limited. “We ran four sessions in the first half of 2015 and will run two before the end of the year. Our teams score SONAR highly in terms of realism, learning and value. The platform offers a highly-realistic, tailor-made, plug-and-play environment making the client experience as real as possible.”

Charles Lankester, SVP, Reputation Management, Ruder Finn Asia-Pacific said today, “We have seen an extraordinary series of high profile crisis situations in the past twelve months where, time after time, senior management is widely criticized for poor crisis management capabilities. Yet in many cases, these were organisations that had crisis management planning in place and were confident it had been tested. When faced with a full-scale issue in 2015, however, management teams often discover the ‘planning’ they have in place is close to worthless. SONAR is fast, effective and action-oriented, designed to identify gaps and propose practical, workable, real-world solutions.”

David Ko, Partner and Managing Director of Daylight Partnership said today, “Our business is advising clients on their digital marketing strategies so we know the risk environment well. The Daylight team has built a technical environment that is real as the real thing: clients often tell us they often forget SONAR is a simulation. We understand the interaction between reputation management and the emerging social media threats faced by corporations which is why we created SONAR. The platform offers clients a practical resource that allows communications, legal, brand and other teams the ability to experience an issue and make decisions in an entirely safe, secure environment.”