Let the Crisis Response Fit the Scandal
Scandals can be nasty things – they happen to people and companies all the time, negatively affecting their reputations and the bottom lines of their businesses. Even if you or your company have done nothing wrong, you can be easily dragged into a scandal through false allegations or associations with a third party.
All PR crises are not created equal and there is no single solution that fits every situation. Still, an effective crisis response is one that considers the nature of the situation, the parties involved and the media channels spreading the bad news.
Some scandals require an immediate reaction, while others are better dealt with through calm refrain.
When responding to a scandalous allegation, it is important to consider a number of factors: Is the allegation true? Is it false? Could it be considered slander or libel? False and libelous claims can be addressed with official statements of denial or legal action against the attacker. True allegations, on the other hand, require a more delicate approach and may involve an apology or a personalized PR damage control plan.
One thing is certain, however: in the age of social media and the 24-hour news cycle, companies simply cannot afford to be unprepared to respond to scandals and PR crises of different sorts. Having a designated crisis PR team is an absolute must for any business that cares about its reputation and financial stability.