Effective Crisis PR Management
Most companies fear the day when they have to face a public relations crisis, and in an ideal world, no company would have to face these types of situations. Unfortunately, this is the real world, and companies have to prepare for when a crisis occurs, not hoping that it never will. That’s why it’s important for companies to manage any PR crisis effectively, including preparing for a different situation beforehand, and knowing what to do throughout a crisis.
Unfortunately, it’s very likely that a company faces a public relations crisis at some point in time throughout its existence. Fortunately, companies have the opportunity to prepare a PR crisis management plan beforehand to minimize any reputational damage from such a situation. Having a PR crisis plan in place will ensure that everyone inside the company will know what to do during a crisis situation. Preparing for a PR crisis situation involves monitoring public sentiment so that the company is prepared to respond to any potentially negative comments or situations as soon as they start developing so that they don’t devolve into a full PR crisis. That means companies will have to monitor the news cycle and any brand mentions from media outlets, to keep track of what journalists are saying about the company and its solutions. Another channel that companies will have to monitor is social media platforms to understand whether the general public has positive, neutral, or negative comments about the company and its solutions. If a company is relatively large, or it has a very popular solution, it’s likely that the business or the solution that’s being monitored will receive a lot of comments. Although they all might be relevant, it’s important for companies to keep track of the most important ones, which is where filtering the comments is essential, and a company has different opportunities for monitoring and filtering these types of comments with the right social listening platform.
Companies will also have to create a PR crisis management plan beforehand, where they will define the chain of command regarding the flow of information during a public relations crisis. Companies can use different types of communication channels to ensure an uninterrupted flow of information throughout a PR crisis, and some social listening platforms can even notify companies through different communication channels whenever the business is being mentioned by the public in a negative light. Then, the company will have to create a PR crisis management plan, where each role is going to be defined so that every employee knows how to react, and what to do throughout the crisis. This type of plan can help both long-term employees, as well as new hires, know where they should direct any external questions so that no misinformation￼ is being spread throughout the PR crisis.