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Before Disaster Strikes: Creating an Effective Crisis Communications Plan

Presented at Ragan's Social Media for PR & Corporate Communications Conference at Disney World Feb 18, 2015

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Before Disaster Strikes: Creating an Effective Crisis Communications Plan

  1. 1. Before Disaster Strikes: Creating an Effective Crisis Communications Plan Sandra Fathi President, Affect Email: sfathi@affect.com tweet: @sandrafathi web: affect.com blog: techaffect.com #RaganDisney 3rd Annual Ragan Social Media for PR & Corporate Communications Conference at Disney World
  2. 2. Before Disaster Strikes: Creating an Effective Crisis Communications Plan Sandra Fathi President, Affect Email: sfathi@affect.com tweet: @sandrafathi web: affect.com blog: techaffect.com #RaganDisney 3rd Annual Ragan Social Media for PR & Corporate Communications Conference at Disney World
  3. 3. PRESENTER BIO SANDRA  FATHI   •  Founder and president of Affect, a public relations and social media firm specializing in technology, healthcare and professional services o  Immediate Past Tri-State District Chair, PRSA o  Past President, PRSA-NY Chapter o  Past President, PRSA Technology Section sfathi@affect.com     @sandrafathi  
  4. 4. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS CORE  CONCEPTS   4 Phases of Crisis Communications •  Readiness •  Response •  Reassurance •  Recovery
  5. 5. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS RECOGNIZING  CRISES   Internal •  Employees •  Facilities •  Vendors/Suppliers •  Distributors/Resellers •  Product External •  Acts of Nature •  Market •  Legal Restrictions/Law •  Customers •  Advocacy Groups Anticipating & Understanding Threats to a Business People, Products, Facilities, Environment
  6. 6. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS CRISIS  SCENARIOS   1.  Senior manager accused of inappropriate conduct including lewd photos with employee – Now on Instagram 2.  Employee arrested for hit and run accident – Now Appearing in Google Search 3.  Employee abusing drugs – Now Posted on his Facebook Profile 4.  Customer credit card details leaked – Now On Twitter 5.  Employee posts rant on company and exposes confidential information – Now on YouTube 6.  Company accused of making children’s toys with poisonous lead paint – Now on a Mommy Blog
  7. 7. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXERCISE  #1   Create A Chart: Potential Threats to Your Business People   Products/ Services   Facili3es/ Opera3ons   Environment   Rank Order High Alert to Low Alert
  8. 8. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS READINESS   Anticipating a Crisis 1.  Crisis Mapping (SWOT Analysis) 2.  Policies and Procedures (Prevention) 3.  Crisis Monitoring 4.  Crisis Communications Plan 5.  Crisis Action Plan 6.  Crisis Standard Communications Template
  9. 9. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS RESPONSE  TIMES   How long before the $@!& hits the fan?
  10. 10. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  GENERAL  MOTORS  
  11. 11. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  GENERAL  MOTORS  
  12. 12. 1. Develop materials: •  Messages/FAQ •  Prepared statements •  Press release template •  Customer letters 2.  Train employees •  Awareness •  Anticipation •  Organizational Preparation 3. Prepare channels: •  Hotline •  Dark site •  Social Media CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS RESPONSE:  CRISIS  TOOLKIT  
  13. 13. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS RESPONSE   Preparing a Response 1.  Don’t delay 2.  Acknowledge situation 3.  Acknowledge impact and ‘victims’ 4.  Commit to investigate 5.  Commit to sharing information and cooperation with relevant parties 6.  Share corrective action plan if available 7.  Respond in the format in which the crisis was received**
  14. 14. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  1800  FLOWERS  
  15. 15. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXERCISE  #2   Prepare a Template Crisis Response: 1.  What happened? 2.  What do we know about it? 3.  Who/what was impacted? 4.  How do we feel about it? (How should we feel?) 5.  What are we going to do about it? 6.  When are we going to do it? 7.  When/how will we communicate next?
  16. 16. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS REASSURANCE   Who to Reassure? How to Reassure? 1.  Develop full response plan 2.  Put plan into action: Immediate remedy 3.  Communicate results of plan and impact 4.  Reaffirm commitment to correction 5.  Demonstrate results of program
  17. 17. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS RECOVERY   Preparing a Long-term Recovery Plan 1.  Review need for operational, regulatory, environmental and employee changes 2.  Develop long-term plan including policies and prevention tactics 3.  Reassess crisis plan 4.  Regain customer/public trust
  18. 18. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  PAPER  MAGAZINE  
  19. 19. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  PAPER  MAGAZINE  
  20. 20. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  ConEd  &  MTA  
  21. 21. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS Hurricane Sandy Social Media Facts: Con Edison •  6,500 Twitter Followers to 23,000 within 2 Weeks •  25 videos posted on pre-Sandy preparation •  100,000+ views and multiple broadcast airings of videos •  2500 Press Release RTs •  140,000 Flickr restoration image views EXAMPLE:  ConEd  &  MTA  
  22. 22. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  ConEd  &  MTA  
  23. 23. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS Hurricane Sandy Social Media Facts: MTA •  Empower street crews •  Empower consumers •  Update MTA.info, YouTube, Flickr, Twitter, FaceBook •  Utilize Urban Digital Panels •  Email/Text Alerts MTA’s 4 Categories of Media Shared: •  Before: Preparation •  During: Storm Hits •  Aftermath 1: Damage •  Aftermath 2: Restoration EXAMPLE:  ConEd  &  MTA  
  24. 24. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  ConEd  &  MTA  
  25. 25. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  MICROSOFT    
  26. 26. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  MICROSOFT  
  27. 27. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  AMERICAN  APPAREL  
  28. 28. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  AMERICAN  APPAREL  
  29. 29. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  AMERICAN  APPAREL  
  30. 30. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  TIDE  LAUNDRY  PODS  
  31. 31. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  TIDE  LAUNDRY  PODS  
  32. 32. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  SONY  HACK   •  Day 1: 11/24 – Computer screen takeover and threatening message to reveal all internal data •  Day 2: 11/25 – All Sony Computers shut down in NY, Hollywood and international. Sony claims to be ‘Investigating an IT Matter” •  Day 3: 11/26 – Still no computers, email or voicemail •  Day 4: 11/27 – 5 Sony films (not yet releases) dumped online on file-sharing hubs •  Days 5, 6, 7 – Stories swirl about North Korean involvement •  Day 8: 12/1 - Sony hires a cyber security firm, FBI launches investigation •  Day 9: 12/2 – Sony chiefs Michael Lynton and Amy Pascal issue company-wide alert to employees about the attack •  ...... •  Day 22: 12/6th – Cyberterrorists threaten to attack movie theaters that show The Interview •  All hell breaks loose
  33. 33. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXAMPLE:  SONY  HACK   1.  Men are paid more than women (stars and executives) 2.  Quid pro quo at play (with journalists) 3.  Ugly side of business (Angelina Jolie ‘minimally talented spoiled brat’ and racially charged jokes about Obama’s taste in movies) 4.  Tracking detailed medical costs and health information about employees 5.  Revealing celebrity aliases
  34. 34. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS EXERCISE  #3   WWYD: What Would You Do? At each stage of the crisis, SONY seems to have made major mistakes. What would you have done differently for each stage? 1.  Readiness 2.  Response 3.  Reassurance 4.  Recovery
  35. 35. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS 10  THINGS  TO  KNOW     1.  Implement Policies to Address Potential Vulnerabilities 2.  Use Social Media as a Tool for Crisis Monitoring 3.  Understand the Response-ability of Social Media 4.  Establish a Framework for Response 5.  Build a Social Media Crisis Toolkit
  36. 36. 6.  Know Where to Respond 7.  Prepare Your Employees in Advance 8.  Establish the Proper Tone 9.  Kill the Automation Switch 10.  Be Honest, Be Transparent CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS 10  THINGS  TO  KNOW    
  37. 37. CRISIS COMMUNICATIONS RESOURCES   White Paper: Crisis Communications in the Social Media Age Download at: Affect.com
  38. 38. How to Create an Effective Crisis Communications Plan Before Disaster Strikes Sandra Fathi President, Affect Email: sfathi@affect.com tweet: @sandrafathi web: affect.com blog: techaffect.com Slides Available: Slideshare.net/sfathi #RaganDisney

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