ARAMCO’s Online Communication Strategies in Time of Crisis: An Examination of the Situational Crisis Communication Theory

  • Siraj T. Degnah, Sharea M. Albogami


This study aims at examining how ARAMCO employed digital platforms to manage the terrorist attack
crisis in 2019. It examined the company’sonline communication strategies in light of the Situational
Crisis Communication Theory (SCCT). The study adopted the qualitative approach by analyzing
ARAMCO’s digital platforms: Twitter, Instagram, Youtube, and its website on the internet. The total
number of ARAMCO’s posts on its digital platforms was 185 posts during the period from 13/6/2019 until
30/12/2019. Twitter ranked first among the platforms used by the company, followed by its official
website, while youtube ranked last. The study found that ARAMCO dealt with the crisis in a scientific
methodological manner where it used 11 online communication strategies which are in conformity with
the SCCT strategies. The study showed that the companyadopted3 other strategies not mentioned in the
theory. The study found that ARAMCO’s communication messages for managing the crisis at its first 3
stages were asynchronous with the crisis lifecycle. However, it used the communication strategies which
are adequate for each stage. The study showed that the non-Arabic communication messages varied to
suit the nature of the audience in various countries.