While the safety of employees and customers are a priority in any crisis, secondary priorities usually include communication management to teams and stakeholders- it’s vital to help manage the situation effectively.
Whether it’s communicating a shortage of products, a change of plan or purely navigating your messaging through uncertain times, here’s our top 5 tips to establish your crisis communications strategy.
1. Keep communications flowing
News moves quickly during a crisis so it’s important you create a steady stream of information- always using clear, fact-based and concise language to avoid any ‘reading between the lines’. This is a good opportunity for your corporate voice to remain confident while addressing your audiences’ needs.
2. Plan ahead- where possible
Avoid the last-minute rush by preparing, where possible. When under time pressures, even half-written statements are better than none. If anything, uncertain times allows a rare opportunity to consider a ‘Plan B’ so don’t be afraid to explore different approaches- your audience will be grateful for alternatives! Consider digital communications, virtual meetings and events (we can help- get in touch)
3. Power to the Process
This is where your communications process comes into its own. Make sure you have a process outlined, your teams are aware of it and how to use and feed into it. You’ll want to consider the following:
- Who are the crisis team?
- Who is the main point of contact and who are the decision-makers?
- Who is responsible for what aspect/communication platform?
- How do you receive up to date information on the crisis?
- How are you responding to high, medium and low requests from your audience?
- How is the crisis evolving and what do you need to communicate to your audience during this time?
4. Review your audience
During a crisis situation, it is common to have a need to stay in touch with a wider audience more regularly. Review your audience and communication platforms in the first instance to ensure you’re hitting all your audience segments with your communications. Don't just assume that posting a generic message across all of your social channels will do it. Despite people being more engaged than ever online right now, in order to get any cut-through, you'll need to capture your audience so adapt your contact to fit- it's more important than ever.
5. As difficult as it is- stay calm and positive
Having a team of experts to support you in a difficult time can be a great asset to help you plan, put processes in place and support you to communicate your messages in a calm and positive way. Our dedicated team of communication experts are on-hand to support you, whether that's a one-off situation or on a longer-term project to help you get through this and gear you up for the 'other side'. Afterall, we're all in this together.
Do you need support with your communications strategy? We’re geared up to work with you remotely, using the latest technology to help ease the disruption and support you.
Get in touch with our Crisis Comms team today