I find that crisis communication is the most exciting part about Public Relations, because I simply believe that it is the most challenging. When a company is in need for crisis communications it is not just their image that is at stake, but their entire business.Here are some of the things I have learned so far when it comes to crisis communications:
Having a proper spokesperson to handle the media is crucial. They should be well trained, experienced, and prepared to meet all the necessary obligations. During a crisis, you also need to communicate with all necessary mediums, audiences and all concerned parties depending on your issue.
Get your message out quickly and in a concise manor; even if it is just to acknowledge concerns and inform parties that action is being taken. A quick post via social media can go a long way. The worst thing to be done in a crisis is ignoring the media and the public. They will assume the worst, and therefore write the worst.
The most important factor in a crisis is honesty, expertise, sympathy and dedication to establish your audience’s trust but more important you must convince them that you understand how they are feeling and you are doing everything in your power to regain their trust.
Another thing you must avoid in crisis communications is pointing fingers, or fighting a negative with a negative. Take responsibility and communicate. Always respond in positive terms whether it is to reaffirm your history of commitment to a high ethical standard or bridge back to another key message that your audience might be more receptive to.