SPECIAL PR CORONAVIRUS EDITION | PART ONE
PR ISSUES MANAGEMENT, COMMUNICATION AND CORONAVIRUS
This blog post is dedicated to the legendary PR consultants of the world who are in the throes of crisis and issues management during this global COVID-19 crisis and resulting corporate communications responsibilities.
In what feels like a moment of uncertainty; one thing is very certain – PR is not all fluff and bubble. PR can often (mostly) be a thankless behind-the-scenes, high intensity job that is featured by tasks made up of tough stuff.
Here are just a few that are relevant right now:
- Getting up at 3.00am to prepare daily speech notes for CEOs and media alerts to syndicate to the press.
- Live-monitoring social media feeds around the clock to keep consumers informed and at ease as news unfolds.
- Issues managing communication for large-scale events that are being cancelled.
- Issues managing proactive and reactive communication for employment changes.
- Consulting product-led businesses on how to manage communication regarding the reduction of the global supply of goods.
- Working closely with businesses to unearth growth opportunities through marketing and PR now and when it is needed most.
- Easing the risk of media message mix-ups in an era of independent journalism.
- Supporting businesses with messaging that promotes a sense of calm and collectedness.
- Assessing and advising consumer risk with consistent key messaging that brings a human element to a corporate world.
- Providing media officials with accurate health-related information helping to minimise the effects of the inaccurate infodemic in a smartphone era.
As coronavirus dominates the news and we observe the media mania, the social media message muddling as well as consumer panic buying and irrational fear unfold. What I would mostly like to acknowledge at this time is the tireless work that my fellow PR consultants and un-sung news disseminating heroes undertake as we together help our clients and the businesses we represent manage crisis and risk scenarios.
Much of the work that a PR person does is behind-the-scenes. We build and protect brands and share stories through informative and important messaging that diffuses unease and connects people through knowledge to build community.
PR is a function that prepares communication for the most important phase of any crisis response plan. It’s a function that informs and ensures connection in times of need.
PR in-flight also reaches far beyond media liaison and social media communication strategies. PR consultants provide strategic consumer insights on how to optimise important, business-sustaining sales opportunities during downturn.
The way in which a business responds to a situation in a major crisis will have a significant effect on how well the entire organisation bounces back when the issue at large has been resolved. Well-managed public relations that helps to navigate public opinion around key issues not only helps a business to make informed decisions but also provides invaluable support that can protect a businesses future.
It’s easy for public perception of a company to flip quickly in a time of crisis; mishandling an emergency that’s outside of your control can change how stakeholders view the business based on its response in any given moment.
So this is a little nod to the PR practitioners of the world (our local PR friends) working hard to fulfil significant client expectations, sustaining long hours under substantial pressure and who remain dedicated in their duty to provide access to accurate and timely information to the communities they represent.
Wishing you and your business good health, peace of mind and excellent PR support.
Words by Jade Roberts
raraPR Founder and Creative Director
raraPR is above all the sum of people who together help build brands and share stories. We are present in our determination to make a positive difference to the world by representing individuals and businesses that are doing good. We are an extension of the personal stories within us, those that we exist for and those within you that need to be heard.