How to Maintain Your Brand During a Crisis
Every business will have to deal with a crisis sooner or later. Your brand is something that you built and should be protected at all cost. It could be justified or unjustified. For example, there’s a difference between suffering due to a scandal and suffering because your industry as a whole has come under attack. But you still have to react to the problem. So how can your brand weather the storm when it comes under attack?
Can You Play the Waiting Game?
Sometimes the waiting game can work and corporations have stonewalled a story in the past. The issue is that this can also backfire and the pressure only builds, which further damages your brand. We wouldn’t recommend simply waiting out a story and pretending it never happened.
Address The Issue Immediately
The moment you notice a big story out in the open you need to address it. How you address it depends on what the story is. For example, if a story is slanderous or fake you should put out your side of the story and take the opposition apart. It could mean commissioning studies or simply relaying the real facts to the media. If you’ve done something wrong you need to think about what you’re going to do to make things right again. Don’t wait and hope the customer goes away because they won’t, and not addressing the issue could affect your revenue.
Make a Public Response to the Problem
If you’re suffering from bad press because of something you did, it’s important to approach the customer directly in a public setting. There’s a reason why companies will contact someone directly on social media or another public forum. This ensures that others are seeing that the company is responding. Apologize for what you did and offer a gift to try to win them back to your side. This could be a replacement for a faulty product, a full refund, or another type of special deal that will get them to back down. It’s not important whether you win the customer back. What is important is that you tried and others saw that you tried.
Bury the Story with Your Own
The one thing that kills a bad story is a different story that’s much more interesting. This is why relatively small issues become major national issues during times when the news is slow. Think about whether you can bring a major announcement forward in order to make the story go down the rankings. It focuses people on other things and you’re also preserving your brand in the process.
Last Word – Don’t Let a Crisis Derail Your Brand
The cause of the negative press is not that important in reality because the way a company reacts should always be the same. You need to respond promptly to stop a small problem from turning into a big problem. However, the best way to avoid these problems is to avoid getting into these situations in the first place by always caring for your customers and running your business with quality in mind.