Crisis PR Company
Crisis Public Relations (PR) Company
Culturehead are a Dublin based Public Relations (PR) Company specialising in Crisis PR and Crisis communications on behalf of organisations in Ireland.
What is Crisis PR?
Crisis PR or is defined as a “specialised form of public relations that is designed to protect and defend an individual, company, or organisation facing a public challenge to its reputation”. A crisis is any situation that strains a brand’s vital resources. This can include brand reputation, leadership, integrity and loyalty. A public relations crisis can cost jobs and irreparably damage personal reputations or commercial brands. Very often people don’t think that a PR crisis will happen to them and so fail to plan and mitigate against the potential risk. It’s not ‘if’ your company will face a crisis its ‘how’, ‘when’ and ‘why’.
How to Mitigate Against Risk
Have a PR Crisis Communications Plan
In the age of instant communication, organisations can not afford to delay when it comes to responding to a public relations crisis. Having a cohesive crisis plan prepared will enable you to respond quickly and effectively to a crisis of any scale. Your communications crisis plan should include:
1. List of key stakeholders. A detailed list of all of the key personnel that will be involved in the event of a crisis. This may include legal, human resources, members of the marketing team, your PR company etc.
2. Roles and responsibilities Map out the functions of each team member during a PR crisis and the hierarchy for decision making.
3. Risk assessment. Perform a risk assessment and situation analysis to identify potential crises. A risk assessment should rate the likelihood of each potential risk and what actions you have taken to mitigate against that risk.
4. Policies and processes. Map out the processes that will be followed in the event of a public relations crisis. What are your organisation’s policies during a crisis in terms of the initial strategy, messaging etc.
Have a communications policy
Your organisation should have a communications policy in place to mitigate against the risk of a potential PR crisis. This document should also outline the procedures and policies for how to communicate during a crisis.
Your communications policy should set out:
1. Procedure for communications. All of your communications be it your social messaging, press releases, blog posts etc. should be proofed and approved. The procedure for this should be set out in your organisation’s communications policy.
2. Content Rules and Guidelines. Your communications policy should set out the guidelines for the type of content that is disseminated via your social media and communications channels. There is no universal rule regarding the type of content that you publish however your communications should be a reflection of your organisation’s cores values. When representing your brand your communications should speak with a ‘universal voice’. Having well-defined content rules and guidelines within your communications policy will help you to avoid any social media blunders or potential PR crises.
Crisis PR: How to De-escalate a PR Crisis
The best type of crisis communications is the one that avoids the crisis altogether. When that's not possible it is vital to get out ahead of the crisis and take back control of the situation. No PR crisis happens in isolation and a crisis often sets off a chain reaction of other crises. Your organisation should have built-in damage control mechanisms.
Damage control steps to consider as part of a proactive crisis management strategy include:
1. Take back control. As much as possible during a PR Crisis, you should be aiming to take back control or the situation. This can be done by controlling how the narrative around the story is framed or by controlling how the story is presented. Don’t relinquish control of the narrative to a media organisation tell your story the way that you want it to be told.
2. Take the conversation offline. Your organisation should have a policy in place to de-escalate any potential PR crisis by moving to immediately take any negative conversation offline. Before any online criticism or complaint gains traction approach the source of that dispute and offer to speak with them privately to fix the issue they have. Getting out in front of the issue will help to minimize any further negative PR.
3. Stealing Thunder. During a PR crisis, the tactic of “Stealing Thunder” can be used to minimize any potential rumours or negativity which is likely to be revealed. Stealing thunder can be described as “a tactic used to weaken the force of an adverse point. By introducing the point first and being open about it or rebutting it, the force of the opposition's argument is diminished”. That is to say, their thunder has been stolen.
Crisis Public Relations (PR) Services
At CultureHead we provide Crisis PR services specifically to businesses in Ireland. Our Crisis Public Relations services companies include:
Developing your brand’s Crisis PR strategy
Advocacy and lobbying on behalf of our clients
Developing our client’s communications strategy
Crisis PR situation management
Crisis PR interview preparation
Optimising crisis PR statement
Point of contact for Crisis PR Communications
Press call and Photocall services
Strategic counter-press campaigns across, television, print, radio and online.
Online Reputation management and monitoring.
Advice on best practice for PR Crisis social media messaging.
Culturehead are a Dublin based public relations (PR) Company specialising in Crisis PR and crisis communications for organisations based in Ireland.
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