In times of crisis, it’s important to not panic. We repeat. DO NOT PANIC! Chances are your consumers are doing this on their own so instead of fueling the fire, it’s crucial to be respectful, compassionate, and look for opportunities to help your community.
During a pandemic, all companies send out a standard email stating they are aware of the current situation and will act according to the government’s recommendations. We’re positive you’ve received over 10 of these emails. LOL
However, this isn’t enough. Don’t just state the measures your business will be taking to ensure the safety of employees. It’s crucial to communicate how your community will be affected and how you plan to honor their safety above all else. Illustrate the methods you’ll be taking to solve any issues that pertain specifically to your business, and how you will continue to serve your community in this new environment. This brings some life into your business. Not only that, it opens up the door for people to feel like they can relate to you.
Crisis Management Timeline
Crisis management, at it’s core, is basically the strategy in which a disaster is handled. It is crucial in upholding your brands’ image in times of trouble. How you handle a crisis will reflect on your brand significantly. Your PR team’s task is to produce a favorable image and maintain a healthy relationship between the consumer, larger community, and the company. Let’s break down crisis management in its entirety to drive the point home. Ready? Let’s dive in!
Before the issue reaches its peak, it’ll serve you best to get ahead of the game. Tune into our podcast where we discuss how we postponed our client’s conference BEFORE everything was canceled and how we crisis managed. If you’re debating whether or not you should say something, you should. Don’t wait for other brands to do it first, beat them to punch. Trust us, you won’t lose anything. It’s a reflection of your brand when you don’t react with urgency. I mean, if we’re being honest, Allegiant put out a statement way, way too late. And they’re an airline for goodness sake. Let’s be proactive here. In this time let your consumers know that you are monitoring the situation and will keep them updated as things begin to develop.
How are you going to respond? The community wants to know what measures you’re taking and how it’ll affect them. Be open, honest, and demonstrate understanding. BE EFFICIENT! You don’t want to be playing catch up when communicating with your customers. Predict their concerns, craft your message accordingly, and plan to adapt your services. WE REPEAT: PLAN TO ADAPT YOUR SERVICES. Remember, you want to establish security and flexibility while maintaining that your priority is their well-being. But also, have a plan for how you’re business will thrive despite the circumstances.
Post Crisis/ Resolution
At this time, business continues as usual. Express the actions you’ve taken as a result of the crisis. If any company policies or procedures have altered, be sure it’s communicated in a clear and effective manner.
Here are some tips to help you facilitate through crisis management:
- Don’t Be Desperate
There’s nothing wrong with wanting to continue to generate revenue, but be sure that this is communicated in a sensitive way. Constantly think of ways to get creative with your offerings if the crisis is impacting your revenue stream.
- Be Sensitive
Tap into the shoes of your customers and those impacted! Show empathy to what is occurring and let your community know that you’re in this new reality together. By keeping them updated and remaining flexible, you will make your community feel protected and supported.
- Don’t Forget Social Media
Now is the time to move online! If you weren’t active on socials before, now is the time to get hip! In a scenario where social isolation is involved, use it to your benefit. Chances are users will be on their phones now more than ever, so remember to stay active and have a consistent presence on your social accounts. Get online, be a light in your community, and engage. We know the term engagement is probably getting annoying now but yes, we will continue to preach about it! To go through a marketing checklist click here.
Understand the state of the world in a time of crisis and respond accordingly. Don’t hide in a nutshell. Acknowledge, be sensitive, get creative and move forward. If you need help communicating with your consumers and community, we are here for you! Email us at firstname.lastname@example.org and let us be your crisis management experts!