Partnering for Success: Why Hire an Agency if You Have an Internal Team

With summer in full swing, many in-house teams are laser-focused on seasonal trade shows, industry events and warm-weather marketing opportunities. This makes perfect sense, but raises an important question; why are their agencies focused on a different season?

At this time of year, as temperatures rise and heating systems become a distant memory, we in the agency world are talking about an equally distant concept — Holiday. That may seem premature on first blush, but agencies often serve as an essential complement to in-house marketing efforts.

This means that brands working with agency support have a two-fold advantage: an in-house team managing day-to-day execution of contemporary tasks while their agency partners develop future opportunities in tandem with the moment. This two-pronged approach is just one of the many reasons working with an agency can be so beneficial.

 

Additional Opportunities

When it comes to Holiday, there’s a distinctly different lifecycle to media coverage opportunities. Here at GreenRoom, we’ve been talking with editors and journalists about Holiday Gift Guides and annual award submissions as far back as our Spring Media Tour — and we’re seeing traction despite being months away from the colder weather. We’ve helped a number of new clients adjust strategy on the fly and add items to their calendar — secure in the knowledge that they now have the right resources to address them.

Our team-based approach to media outreach drives impactful coverage year around, not just during Holiday. We’re constantly cross-pitching, which means your brand is given more opportunities to gain media attention via roundups, briefings, and trend pieces.

This happens on the digital front as well. Marketing teams are often overflowing with work, so they’re unable to start tackling holiday campaigns until much later in the year, when options for partnering on large-scale initiatives are more limited. An agency partner keeps the ball rolling, and by the time fall comes around, Holiday campaigns are already in full development.

As on the media side of the house, our digital seasonal strategy isn’t limited to just holiday. Our team has spent the summer dressing models in sweaters and tailgate football gear, prepping for creative content that will publish in fall and winter.

Agencies can help in influencer negotiation and balancing seasonal initiatives

Industry Insight

Working with a number of clients facing the same challenges puts an agency in the ideal position to inform timing, budget, and strategy on both the media and digital marketing fronts. While we’ll constantly analyze the performance of your brand’s initiatives towards established goals, we’ll also compare this progress to the results we’re seeing from other clients. Because of this, you gain a greater depth analysis. If something needs to be changed, we can borrow learnings from other clients, and implement a strategy that we already know to be successful.

This is especially important on the digital front, where platform algorithms constantly change. If you’re working with just one brand, it may take months to analyze a trend that an agency will quickly see appearing across multiple clients. This means that clients partnered with an agency can better take advantage of platform updates, adjusting strategy to meet the needs of today.

On the PR front, agencies are the first to know when a publication is changing direction or when a new reporter is hired for a beat. This up-to-the-minute information creates efficiencies in media outreach and saves time and effort.

 

Negotiation

Negotiating pricing is another key area in which agencies pay dividends for their brand partners. Third-party vendors and influencers know that agencies have a broader client reach, so agencies can often negotiate better rates and find deals more regularly than a single in-house team.

Negotiation doesn’t just happen on the outside — sometimes internal marketing teams need additional resources to get senior management on board with a new initiative. This is also the time of year when marketing teams are pointing towards budget discussions that will impact the year to follow. We can help bolster the case for additional dollars that could mean the difference between running in place or speeding ahead. An agency can be that reliable outside voice, often delivering the essential push when a VP needs to ok a budget.

Agencies can provide in-house marketing teams with in-depth industry analysis.

When Is the Right Time to Hire an Agency?

We know that even the most skilled of internal teams can benefit from additional resources for seasonal initiatives, product launches and award nominations, among other milestones taking place in the back half of the year.

More often than not, we find that the best answer to the question “When?” is: right now. (Yesterday: no longer an option!)

The Right Time to Hire a Public Relations Agency

Often in our conversations with brands the question arises of when to hire an agency. While each situation is unique, there are a few times when agency support can be especially helpful.

Launching a Brand New Product

As an agency, we’re able to place our clients in a plethora of marquee media outlets. By giving the media a first look at the product, the brand is positioned to have a string of hard-hitting press coverage publish during the launch. This is a great way to generate buzz and place your new product at the forefront of consumer’s attention.

Holiday Season Buzz

The holiday season is a critical time of year for retail companies, as millions of potential customers are in “buying mode.” One of the most sought after media placements are Holiday Gift Guides, some of which are the only source of product information for shoppers! However, the timeline for this may start earlier than you think. We typically start Gift Guide conversations with reporters in June — yes, June! — in order to maximize coverage. Opportunities and placements will grow as we get closer to the holiday season.

Attending a Trade Show

When it comes to trade shows, our biggest priority for our clients is to make a huge splash. Whether it’s a large show like CES or an industry-specific show like Interbike, we strive to fully maximize the days you’ll be attending. In addition to booth support, we’ll secure meetings with top-tier media outlets during the show, giving you an opportunity to present your product front and center to some of the biggest names in media. On the social side, trade shows can be one of the best times to take advantage of live features and trending opportunities. Our team can be on-the-ground to handle photos, video, and live digital engagement.

Just Looking For More Brand Awareness

Maybe you’ve been selling your product for quite some time and feel like you’ve plateaued. You might feel that if you could just reach fresh eyes, your product would take off. That’s where we come in! We provide you with a PR and social “megaphone” that allows you to spread the word  to millions of potential customers. With sample units available, we’re able to create engaging social content that aligns perfectly with the brand story we’re telling  marquee media outlets. This one-two punch of social and PR will make sure your product is not only being seen, but being seen by the right people.

The Importance of Face-to-Face Meetings

How many times have you sent a text or email and that was later misinterpreted, either by a friend, family member or even a client? Although the world is becoming increasingly digital, the benefits of face-to-face interaction are irreplaceable—despite Skype and Apple’s aggressive efforts at video chatting! The following are a few reasons why you should think twice before scheduling your next call with a client.

1)            Body Language

Digital communication with clients and the media has its perks. It’s quick and straight-forward; however, digital communication can be tricky, especially when the relationship is new or a special project is at stake.

Let’s say you have a scheduled call with a client to propose a new outreach plan that includes pitching a product or aspect of the business through non-traditional angle. Once you finish laying out the strategy, there is a long pause on the line followed by, “Yeah, sure that’s a good idea.” You’d probably wish you wish you were sitting face-to-face to witness their initial reaction and body language? Instead of having to dig through a series of follow-up questions hoping to figure out your client’s actual sentiments, a face-to-face meeting would have allowed you to sense their attitude from the beginning and address the issue accordingly.

2)            Quality Collaboration

When was the last time you woke up without dozens of unread emails? While ubiquitous, shuffling through emails can often suck time and creativity from your work.  Do you think that world’s most creative teams come up with cutting-edge campaigns through an email thread? Unlikely.

Creative collaboration through email can prevent the natural flow of ideating, a vital component of any successful brainstorming session and project management discussion. A face-to-face meeting allows you and your team to bounce ideas off each other on the spot, rather than having to navigate an overflowing inbox.

3)            Establishing Trust

Trust is a critical component of any working relationship. In vendor relationships, which have the added pressure of expected results and the need for effective counsel in order to push a business’ bottom line, this trust needs to be developed especially quickly.  Face-to-face interaction goes miles in establishing this trust.

A study published in the Journal of Experimental Social Psychology measured the effectiveness of a face-to-face request versus an email request and found that face-to-face requests were 34 times more effective than emailed ones, due to nonverbal cues and perceived trustworthiness. Although technology has done wonders for society’s overall progress, the fact remains that we like facing each other. Technology isn’t going anywhere – we don’t want it to—but it’s important to realize the power of face-to-face communication isn’t backing down either.

Potential Marketing Material You’re Missing Out On

What comes to mind when you think of a cease-and-desist letter? A few paragraphs filled with legal verbiage, reprimanding and threatening a business or person for participating in some type of illegal activity? Usually, you’d be right. Most cease-and-desist letters follow a similar format and structure. However, Netflix stirred things up with latest recent cease-and-desist letter to an unauthorized bar themed around the company’s original series, Stranger Things.

Netflix made the letter casual and lighthearted–emulating the series and its characters’ overall mood and spirit. Ditching the typical formal greeting, the company started off the casually-written letter by addressing the owners of the bar by nickname, Danny and Doug. What followed was just as informal and playful, with references to the show’s notable use of walkie talkies, the Upside Down an even Dr. Brenner. However, despite the informal tone, the company made it very clear that if the owners didn’t shut the bar down, there would be serious consequences–like the Demogorgon or their mom getting involved (yikes!).

Showcasing Your Company’s Personality in an Unexpected Way

Although entertaining, the letter is much more profound as it showcases the company’s brilliant understanding of marketing. For years, companies have tried to showcase their personality to the public through different marketing materials. For companies with bigger budgets, these materials are usually in the form of commercials, provocative billboards  and a strong social media presence. For those with smaller budgets, a grassroots approach is more likely to be utilized. However, would you ever consider a legal document with potentially serious ramifications as a form of marketing? Netflix demonstrated clever marketing which was leveraged as  a solid public relations story that achieved their goal without tarnishing their reputation. Netflix enforced it copyrights while portraying itself as a fun and cool company, which is quite a feat.

In another unique example, McDonald’s flipped its iconic golden arches upside down across different outlets, including a branch’s outdoor sign, to celebrate International Women’s Day. The company could have simply sent out a tweet acknowledging the cause, but chose to make a serious statement and  flipping one of their restaurant’s outdoor signs. In doing so, the company sent a message and strategically placed itself as a serious advocate of women, which consequently strengthened the company’s image of being socially responsible.

Ultimately, companies like Netflix and McDonald’s prove there are countless–and frequently overlooked–opportunities to spotlight and heighten your brand’s image. Whatever image you wish to present to the public, whether it’s a creative and user-friendly personality like Netflix’s or a socially-conscious and thoughtful personality like McDonald’s, could be conveyed through all aspects of your company. So, the next time your PR department is constructing a press release or your HR department is sending a letter of warning to a fellow employee, conceptualize ways your brand’s personality could shine through and be reinforced.

Inside the Algorithm: What Facebook’s Changes Mean for Your Content

Facebook’s latest update

Since its launch in September 2006, the Facebook News Feed has been in a state of flux. From the introduction of Like buttons to the prioritization of popular posts to the crackdown on clickbait and fake news, Zuckerberg and company have continually updated the News Feed to optimize the user experience. Since a 2015 report in the Journal of Experimental Psychology that mindlessly scrolling Facebook could be detrimental to mental health, the platform has concentrated its efforts on driving active participation on the platform.

With the latest algorithm update in January 2018, Facebook overhauled their ranking process to focus on engaging content from family and friends over content from brands and publishers. Vice president of News Feed Adam Mosseri shared in a Newsroom post that the updates would prioritize “posts that spark conversations and meaningful interactions between people.”

How does Facebook determine what is meaningful?

The platform is using reactions, comments and shares to adjudicate how compelling a post actually is. While it may seem that engagement spend is the easy answer to this, friend-to-friend interactions will take precedence. Companies will have to think less about what the brand wants to push, and more about what their target audience wants to see.

What does this mean for content creation?

Creators should put themselves into the shoes of their social customer and ask, “What kind of content would I want my best friend to see?” Thought leadership and philanthropic efforts are more likely to organically take root within an organic community than flash-in-the-pan sponsored posts. Similarly, this type of content is more likely to generate long-term benefits than its ephemeral meme-like counterparts.

Additionally, because we can anticipate that users will be spending less time on the platform, there should be a stronger focus on snappy, succinct content that contributes positively to a viewer’s Facebook experience. Gone are the days of sharing a meandering ten-minute YouTube tutorial on your Facebook page; concise, meaningful content is in.

What does this mean for marketers?

Marketers will need to think outside of the box of engagement baiting to create content that is genuinely engaging, rather than artificially popular. Clickbait-style promotions, including giveaways that use “Comment below!” or “Like this post to enter!” will have higher CPM rates, higher cost-per-click and lower organic reach overall than they have in the past.

It will take months for these updates to roll out across all of Facebook’s products. As we learn more about what these changes mean for brand reach and how to best spend in the new digital climate, one thing is true now more than ever: it’s all about your audience.

Incorporating a Color Palette into Your Brand Marketing

Oreo and Coca-Cola have bright, signature colors that they use in almost all of their collateral

Iconic brands use color to grab audience attention and establish trust.

Picture a box of Oreos. The container’s shade of royal blue is likely one of the first things you were able to conjure. This is, of course, because the package itself is blue. However, that image has been reinforced by multi-million dollar marketing campaigns that consistently incorporate a perfect stack of white and black cookies and a glass of milk on a simple background that includes that iconic box blue. This long-term color branding is one of the reasons AdWeek has named Oreo one of the top 10 brands.

Oreo is far from the only brand with this level of color palette recognition. Take the red picture above, do you know what brand it is?

Coca-Cola instantly came to mind. The company’s “Coca-Cola Red” is so ubiquitous with the brand they were able to trademark it.  The strongest and most memorable brands always use their brand color in marketing: logo, print marketing materials, signage, websites, social media graphics, blog posts and presentation decks.

 

Branding for Growing Businesses

GreenRoom Agency clients Soundcast and Sound of Sleep use color to establish trust in their brand.

Brands large and small can benefit from a strong use of color in marketing materials.

However, the value of a color palette isn’t limited to household names. Growing businesses can start to reap the benefits of a color palette using their brand colors in product photography and digital compositions as a background color. Not only does this help establish brand recognition, but this color selection can heavily impact how viewers feel about your company and its products.

Thinking beyond backgrounds: brands can subtly choose to incorporate brand colors into props and other seemingly small decisions. Notice the color of the napkin on the table beneath the Oreo cookie pancakes. This is not just coincidence—it’s an impactful example of an attentive designer intuitively establishing brand recognition for viewers.

GreenRoom embraces color in the creative work across clients. For Soundcast, a high-end Bluetooth speaker brand, we leveraged the company’s bright orange and charcoal gray in a holiday carousel ad campaign that resulted in the company’s most successful click-through rates to date.

In a subtler approach, GreenRoom edits or skillfully selects light blue and white items—a blanket, shirt, wall, or lamp—for sleep client Sound of Sleep. These colors non-explicitly send a message of peace, calm, and relaxation in images that are used in social media posts, on the website, across digital advertising, and even in the images we send to press that are ultimately incorporated into media reviews and roundups.

For each brand, the goal of a color pallette is to create a consistent brand experience that ultimately leads to stronger brand recognition. When you’ve achieved this, your target audience will intuitively trust trust and enjoy the products more, easing the transition into top-of-mind purchase research and, ultimately, sales.

CES 2018 and Beyond

CES 2018 Trade Show Collage

Images from GreenRoom and its clients during CES 2018 and the PGA Merchandise Show, both industry trade shows.

Each January brings the first of many industry trade shows in the annual Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas. Brands across a wide spectrum of vertical markets participate, and many clients say that the show (and its allied events such as Pepcom) can be incredibly impactful to attract media attention, drive brand awareness, and develop relationships with partners and consumers for the year ahead.

Planning for industry trade shows and events such as these can be challenging; how to select which shows offer the best opportunities to execute communications strategy, budgeting for them successfully (both in terms of dollars allocated and internal resources dedicated), and building media calendars for public relations/ leveraging digital and social media content into success at the trade show itself.

One great example of this is utilizing an industry event or trade show to promote new partnerships. At the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando, we aided our client Blast Motion in the announcement of an exclusive deal with golf giant TaylorMade. With all the biggest names in golf media attending the show, this provided a platform to amplify the news in the right place at the right time. The GreenRoom team has a strong track record in developing successful strategies for such industry events, and helping clients manage participation to maximum effect.

Following each event, leveraging media and industry contacts into high-profile coverage and dynamic relationships often overwhelms internal teams focused on a number of deliverables. Here, too, we find that having a team of professionals, such as a communications agency, at your command expands the amount of time and energy brands have to plan for future events on the calendar. This can drive media coverage and sales opportunities throughout the year, resulting in met or exceeded marketing goals, all while engaging consumers and building a community of brand ambassadors.

6 Website Problems and WordPress Plugins That Can Solve Them

If you’re one of the 27 percent of websites powered by WordPress, you already know this is a powerful platform.

What you may not know is how you can take your website to the next level. Enter the world of plugins. With the right plugins, your site can reach new heights — without the assistance of an expensive developer or classes in coding.

Whether you’re looking to expand your email newsletter list or add functionality to your images, we’ve done the research on several website problems and WordPress plugins that can help.

1. You want more data from your website.

 

Honestly, who doesn’t want more analytics from their website? This is why the WordPress team created Jetpack, a free plugin that provides site stats in an easy-to-digest dashboard. In addition to the must-have insight, Jetpack crawls your site every five minutes, alerting you if any issues arise. In an era of daily cyber security threats, this added benefit is essential.

2. Your website isn’t SEO friendly. 

For every time a business owner has said “I want better SEO,” there’s been a later look of bewilderment as he/she views the overwhelming and often contradictory information about how to execute that goal. This is where Yoast SEO comes in: even if you’re not an expert, Yoast SEO helps you create more effective content and improve your SERP ranking. For example, this plugin shows you a Google search result snippet preview, so you can see exactly how your content will look when it appears in a Google search.

3. Your contact forms aren’t cutting it. 

While most WordPress themes come with built-in contact forms, it’s often better to create your own. Improve your UX with the WP Forms plugin. WP Forms’ drag and drop form builder allows you to easily create your own that can be customized for your use — ranging from contact information to payment collection. There are many plugins out there that have this functionality, but WP Forms makes it streamlined.

4. Your responsive website’s images aren’t optimized. 

If you have a responsive website, then Soliloquy is essential. This plugin creates simple image and video sliders though their pre-built templates. The media on your website tells an important story, and this plugin allows you to make the most of your photos and videos. Just drag and drop your images to begin building!

5. Your website isn’t growing your newsletter contact list. 

Do you have a recurring newsletter through MailChimp? Take your email lists to a new level with Mailchimp for WordPress! When you connect your accounts, you can increase your email subscribers through an opt-in form or add the functionality to allow your visitors to subscribe from other forms on your website, including your comment form, contact form or checkout form.

6. Your photos aren’t visually appealing. 

Envira believes you shouldn’t have to hire a developer to create a visually appealing WordPress gallery, and we couldn’t agree more! If you’re not satisfied with your website’s gallery, a plugin like Envira Gallery can make your photos look much more polished. Additionally, its responsive design and SEO-friendly features like quick loading images and image tagging make this plugin a no brainer. Even though it can be tricky to optimize photos for search purposes, Envira gallery’s features set you up for mobile and desktop success.

Do you have a plugin that you couldn’t live without? Share it in the comments!

How to Jump Start Your PR Career: Advice to New Grads

You’ve sharpened your PR skills, developed relationships and honed your copywriting craft over the last four years. Now what?

Entering the world of PR as a young professional can be daunting, but with jobs in PR expected to grow by 24 percent through 2018, there are plenty of opportunities to gain valuable industry experience from the start. While there’s no secret to success, there are tips and tricks we’ve learned along the way that can help you jumpstart your PR career. Here’s our advice for new grads:

 

Get Involved by Joining a Professional PR Organization

In a world where you are who you know, networking is essential.

Joining professional and volunteer organizations outside of the workplace will help build your presence in the community. These organizations provide you with the opportunity to hone in on your PR skills, while providing you with an avenue to share your knowledge with others. I joined Junior League of Miami, which is a part of the AJLI and it’s helped me network through volunteer opportunities.” said GreenRoom’s Rebecca Casamayor.

 By establishing connections and sharing your interests, you lay the foundation for a business relationship.

Not sure where to start? Ask a former internship colleague or a trusted professor.

 

Be Patient When it Comes to Finding the Right Position

As a fresh college graduate, you’re naturally eager and anxious to land a paying gig. However, you shouldn’t settle for just anything. Practice patience, as GreenRoom’s Dani Frank highlights here:

“Finding your first job won’t always happen in the first month, three months or even six months after you graduate. Don’t let this stress you out. Focus on finding an office you’ll be excited to show up to each day, a boss that you’ll be able to learn from and a company where you’ll have the potential to grow,” Frank said.  

In short: Look for a job that will provide you with the experience and growth opportunity that’s right for you.

Feeling frustrated during your job search because you’re not hearing back from applications? Try updating your LinkedIn profile with these tips.

 

Don’t be Afraid to Stand Out in Your New Position

Starting your first PR position can be overwhelming, but it’s important to remember that simply trying (and sometimes failing!) is the best way to grow. Make a strong first impression at your new job by taking on unfamiliar tasks and sharing your fresh ideas.

“Accept new challenges. Don’t be afraid to go all in on something you’ve never done before. In my career, I’ve done everything from mitigating international crises to rebranding a city to speechwriting for the chairman for the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. There’s not a class in the world that would have taught me how to do any of the above. But a willingness to learn and the courage to take risks will get you far in your career,” GreenRoom’s Austin Langlois said.

 

Stay up to Date with PR Industry News

Although you’re not physically sitting in a classroom anymore, learning is still a top priority. As the world of PR and media constantly evolves, so must you to maintain your expert status. Not only will this help your career, but sharing insights can make you a thought leader in the industry.

“The media landscape is constantly evolving. Although you have officially graduated from college, it is important to keep your finger on the pulse by indulging in industry literature. It’s always impressive when a recent graduate is well versed on industry happenings.” Casamayor said.

Looking for outlets to utilize? Visit PR Daily, Adweek and PRSay to stay in the loop on the latest best practices.

 

Understand Clients Goals From the Start

While every company wants to sell its product or service, that doesn’t mean every company has the same goals.

“You have to know what your clients’ goals are. Without that, you cannot be successful,” GreenRoom’s Alex Onaindia said.

The company could have very external goals like heightened brand awareness or selling into a key market, or a more internal focus like impressing an investor or improving employee retention. Ask questions and get specific when talking with your client.

By being persistent, establishing a network, and taking risks, you’re sure to set yourself up for success. Don’t forget, every PR professional was once in your shoes, so listen and learn from their experiences.

Now that you’re ready to begin your career in PR, read our blog post Letter to Future Public Relations Practitioners to find out what a career in PR really looks like from a recent graduate.

4 Crisis Communication Do’s and Don’ts to Avoid a PR Disaster

The past month has been quite a rollercoaster ride for companies like United Airlines, Pepsi, and United Airlines (again) who found themselves in the spotlight for all the wrong reasons. At GreenRoom, we thought it prudent to put together four quick dos and don’ts when faced with a crisis. In the case that Oliva Pope doesn’t pick up the phone when you call, it’s critical to have a plan, which leads me to our first piece of advice:

 

DO have a plan of execution

4 Crisis Communication Do’s and Don’ts to Avoid a PR Disaster GreenRoom Agency

With the amount of time spent planning announcements, marketing campaigns, trade show logistics, or even a vacation, the thought of having a “crisis communication” plan tends to fall to the wayside. Ensuring a designated spokesperson is prepared, and the message to media contacts is clear, having both an internal and external order of operations helps streamline conversations in the event a brand is faced with a crisis.

 

DON’T wait until the crisis comes

As you can imagine, this is easier said than done. Your day is filled with attending to pressing matters that could determine whether you hit your fiscal year’s goal, and the last thing you want to focus on is a hypothetical situation that may never occur. Generally, when corporate entities scramble, it’s very clear to the public and companies typically begin making terrible decisions. The potential snowball effect can lead to unintended consequences that prolong a crisis.

 

DO view the situation from the audiences’ point of view

4 Crisis Communication Do’s and Don’ts to Avoid a PR Disaster GreenRoom Agency

Once the crisis presents itself, take a step back and understand who is truly being affected and why. Sometimes when a company finds themselves in a crisis, the reasons aren’t always obvious, and other times it’s right in your face. Social media offers the ability to see the conversation in real time and can give perspective on the situation which can lead to a more effective and compassionate solution.

 

DON’T assume the audience is wrong or overreacting

The term “PR nightmare” exists for a few reasons and often arises out of an expectation that was amiss. Perhaps a concept was not meant to be insensitive but was perceived in a way that unleased a tornado of backlash. While it’s impossible to always know what someone will think, trying to view a campaign from a multitude of angles can avoid a misunderstanding. However, it’s always important to exercise empathy in the wake of something the public deems offensive.

 

DO move quickly

4 Crisis Communication Do’s and Don’ts to Avoid a PR Disaster GreenRoom Agency

In the PR world, timing is EVERYTHING. Whether you’re preparing a launch event and need to assure a high volume of press coverage is published or looking to secure longer-lead opportunities for a seasonal marketing initiative, it is imperative that everything is timed correctly so you don’t miss what could be a major opportunity for brand awareness. The same thing applies in a crisis situation! Once a fire starts you need to begin putting it out before it burns down a village. This is closely intertwined with preparation, so you’re not wasting valuable time bouncing ideas off one another (in an already stressful situation), and immediately begin executing your plan and mend your brand.

 

DON’T wait it out

In a world of 24-hour Snapchat Stories (or at this point, Facebook and Instagram stories), it can be very easy to assume that certain things will blow over soon enough. While that may be the case, companies that find themselves in a crisis learn rather quickly that sitting on the sideline can only make matters worse. When someone wants an answer, they want it now!

 

DO be transparent

4 Crisis Communication Do’s and Don’ts to Avoid a PR Disaster GreenRoom Agency

When you find yourself with your reputation on the line, the last thing you want to do is add fuel to the fire and give people more of a reason to be upset or distrusting. Honesty and clarity are key. Explain the situation in conversational language and paint a clear picture on how you plan to resolve the issue. There are always two sides of a story, and sometimes it takes a company explaining their side of the story to help clarify misconceptions. By not addressing the issue head on, the audience can become even more unforgiving and elevate the situation to unfixable levels. Always be honest and never mislead, which takes us to our final don’t…

 

DON’T lie

This one is a no-brainer but has been ignored in the wake of a crisis when people are not thinking clearly in tense situations. While it may seem like an easy way out, the moment it comes to light that a company lied, trust is violated, which is something consumers take quite seriously. You don’t have to take our word for it, just ask Samsung.

There is no perfect formula to resolving a crisis, as some situations can take months or even years to fix. Being prepared and having a plan of action can go a long way when you find yourself in this situation. However, if you’re a company that can do-no-wrong, there are still plenty of great reasons to hire a PR agency. Keep in mind though, there isn’t a company on this planet that is immune to a crisis, as we learned when media darling and source of nutrition for Millennials was put on the spot – I’m of course talking about Chipotle.

Do you have any crisis communication tips to share? Comment to tell us your insights!