How To Handle a PR Crisis
When a PR crisis hits, you need to know how to survive it. The media and the public don’t give second chances at a first impression, so it’s essential that you get it right the first time.
Howard Bragman and La Brea Media are a crisis public relations firm that knows how to get you safely to the other side.
What Are Public Relations?
Public Relations, often abbreviated to PR, involves how a person or company interacts with the general public or population at large. If your business has any interaction with the public, whether it be in-person or online, then you can consider yourself involved in PR. However, interacting with the public isn’t always easy, especially when it comes to social media. And there are new formats, applications and sites every week. It feels like the rules are changing in real time. Without expert counsel, mistakes can, and will, be made. What can often matter most is how you respond to these mistakes because, handled poorly, they can easily worsen your predicament.
If you find yourself in a PR Crisis, the best way to move forward is to start by not saying a word until you speak with a crisis management expert or a public relations crisis guru. Howard Bragman is just that.
A PR crisis can occur when your reputation or business is connected to a negative event that gains the attention of the public. A public relations crisis can manifest in many ways, including employee issues, customer incidents, an online faux pas, or even suspect business practices. No company or person is exempt from PR problems. While you may do the best to control what you can, negative events are more likely than ever to occur at one time or another. A PR crisis can jeopardize your company’s reputation, business integrity, and bottom line. Bad PR crisis management can sink the boat entirely.
What can make these types of crises so difficult is how little you can do to control the outcome. Once the public has seen negative publicity about you, whether it’s biased or not, your company’s reputation can be seriously tainted. The public will generally choose to do business with companies that it trusts. To put it simply: if you lose that trust, you lose customers, you lose business. If the damage is already done, it will need to be repaired as swiftly as possible. That’s why having the best crisis PR firm is so important. Your crisis response is paramount. Whether you release a statement or remain silent, there will be intense scrutiny while you are in the media spotlight. How you respond is key — don’t go it alone
How you handle a PR crisis response can make or break your reputation, so it’s vital that you place your trust in the right PR firm.
That’s where La Brea Media comes in.
How Can La Brea Media Help With PR Crisis Management?
To survive or handle a PR Crisis, you need the best crisis PR firm on your side. Howard Bragman and La Brea Media can help you:
- Assemble the best PR crisis response team
Ideally you’ll have an emergency team already assembled, but if not Howard Bragman and La Brea Media’s PR team will make sure to appoint the right people to tackle your PR crisis. If you’re a business, the best response teams can often include a mix of in-house company employees, attorneys, investigators, fresh-eyed outside observers, and social media experts. Howard can also be your crisis spokesperson, ensuring that your business presents a single unified voice.
- Create a PR crisis response strategy
Howard Bragman and La Brea Media can work with you on your messaging to ensure that any statements released publicly reflect positively on your reputation and are in alignment with your intentions. In a crisis, effective communication is key. As part of any crisis response strategy it is essential to ensure every person involved in your business, regardless of their seniority or role, is aware of the company line. Social media outlets, like Facebook and Twitter, can be minefields if not handled correctly. The public may have questions, and the media may want to know who to speak to or where to direct inquiries, so it’s important that the answers given by everyone are clear, specific, and unified. This is strategic communication and will ensure your messaging is delivered with unity and impact.
- Deliver your message effectively
It’s important to act quickly with your crisis response strategy and crisis communication plan. The amount of time it takes to respond to a crisis can sometimes amplify the damage done. La Brea Media can ensure that the right message is delivered at the right time. If you’re a business, media training is essential to ensure that your message is effectively delivered, perhaps with a personal statement from the CEO, a general social media statement, or even from Howard himself. Your crisis communications plan may also involve getting in touch with your employees, investors, executives, and key stakeholders.
Be careful, sometimes a response can be seen as an admission of guilt; if you’re concerned that may be the case, don’t risk making a mistake. Let Howard and La Brea Media craft a response that gets it right the first time. We will keep your hands clean, while being compassionate and considerate. Our friendly contacts in the media will be given your side of the story in a way that best suits our strategy and present it in a way that aligns with our crisis communications plan.
- Monitor the ongoing PR crisis situation
La Brea Media’s crisis management team employ cutting-edge technology and strategy to monitor online communication pertaining to your reputation and business. This ensures we’re kept up to date and can work on keeping any negative articles and comments under control and to a minimum. A company that has even one bad review on the first page of google’s search results is more likely to lose up to 22% of first-time customers. Our team will be keeping an eye on media mentions, Google reviews, images, posts, and social media outlets to track and observe content pertaining to your reputation. With this media monitoring and social listening, we’ll be able to identify negative trends as they develop and get ahead of them to protect your brand and reputation.
- Forge a path forward
Once the dust settles, you can go home again. La Brea Media will help you move into the future while helping you to learn from the past. In some cases, you may emerge stronger than before. In marketing terms, we call it ‘pre-promoted’. For your return, the audience has some starting awareness, some loyalty and this awareness just needs to be redirected a bit. Every PR crisis is a learning opportunity. Howard can help you identify ways to move forward with the expertise and guidance required to help ensure you don’t end up in the same crisis again. If you’re pre-emptive in your approach, you’ll have already reached out to La Brea Media and have the necessary crisis management tools to ensure you never got into the crisis in the first place, or that at least you had a handle on the media and general public through an effective crisis communication plan.
Why do I need a PR Crisis Management Firm?
Crisis public relations can be incredibly tricky. Without a skilled crisis PR firm to help you survive the storm, people have the tendency to make the wrong choices and often end up creating PR nightmare.
They lash out on social media instead of responding strategically.
They react too quickly with unclear messaging, or too slowly, drawing ire from the public.
They might even give the dreaded “no comment” response, effectively cutting themselves off at the knees.
La Brea Media can ensure that these mistakes are not made by you or your business, now or in the future. Your reputation is important.
Howard Bragman is here to help you respond to any crisis.