Crisis communication is a subspecialty of PR, and it’s designed to protect and defend an individual, company, or organization facing a public challenge to its reputation.
Crisis communications aim to help an organization minimize damage to its reputation from negative publicity during a critical event or situation.
The best way to handle a crisis is to prevent it from happening in the first place. To do that, companies need to have a crisis communications plan in place.
Even if a company has never experienced a crisis before, it’s important to have one in place so companies can be prepared should something happen.
It is important to have a plan in place before anything happens. Ensure employees know what the plan is so they’re prepared for anything that could happen.
Organizations also need to keep their customer base informed about changes that may impact them directly or indirectly.
Some crises, like natural disasters and unexpected deaths, are unavoidable. Some others can be prevented with proper planning and preparation.
When a crisis strikes, it is essential to communicate quickly and clearly with every stakeholder group. This has to be done through a carefully planned communications strategy.
The process begins by gathering information to assess the situation and identify key messages. Companies should then engage with stakeholders to ensure the message is getting through.
If necessary, they may also engage third parties such as industry experts, financial analysts, or government officials.
When a crisis strikes, speed is everything. A crisis can quickly escalate and disrupt a business, damage its reputation, and cost it millions of dollars in lost revenue – all in just a matter of hours.
An effective crisis communications strategy can help companies turn a potential disaster into an opportunity.
Taking the time to plan for potential crises will enable companies to respond quickly and confidently when that next big challenge hits.
Ronn Torossian is the founder of NY based PR Firm, 5W Public Relations. Torossian is also founded The Ronn Torossian Foundation to support global charitable initiatives.