Brand Image Crisis

Posted On: 06/1/23

By: Astrid Velasquez   

Helping your Corporate clients in developing a contingency plan against a brand image crisis.

In today’s fast-paced and interconnected world, brands are constantly vulnerable to various crises that can severely impact their reputation, customer trust, and overall business success. From product recalls and data breaches to scandals involving key executives, brand crises can arise from a range of internal or external factors. However, what sets successful companies apart is their ability to effectively manage and navigate these crises, minimizing the damage and rebuilding trust with their stakeholders.

We’ve seen crisis struck Corporations. Examples could be, the American Airlines crisis during the terrorist attacks on 9/11 in the USA. Or Facebook’s data privacy scandal in 2018.

These examples highlight the importance of effective brand crisis management in addressing challenging situations and rebuilding trust with stakeholders. By implementing strategies such as transparent communication, proactive measures, and decisive actions, organizations can navigate crises and emerge stronger.

Mr. Kim Bashim wrote an article for Business Insider stating that:

“Crisis management requires more than an apologetic press release or a CEO’s disingenuous appearance on CNN. News goes viral in a flash. Companies must be ready to respond to disasters swiftly and decisively, using all platforms to communicate with the public.”

There’s no cure-all method to remedy company crises, but there are things we can do as market researchers to help clients uncover and manage their key brand assets and how to protect themselves against  damage done during a PR brand crisis.

Every organization is vulnerable to crises. The days of playing ostrich are gone. If you don’t prepare, you will incur more damage. We have often found a failure to address the many communications issues related to crisis/disaster response.

And this is where social network analysis comes in handy!

According to Bernstein Crisis Management, the main steps of Crisis Management Communications should include:

  1. Anticipate Crisis: Conduct vulnerability audits and be sure to use social network analysis tools to immediately understand what is being said about your brand.
  2. Identify your Crisis communications team: Ideally, the organization’s CEO will lead the team, with the firm’s top public relations executive and legal counsel as his or her chief advisers.
  3. Establish Notification and Monitoring Systems: Social media can be the best/fastest way to reach some of our stakeholders.

As Market Consultants we should be capable of managing several Social Network Monitoring Systems.

Intelligence gathering is an essential component of both crisis prevention and crisis response.

According to Bernstein’s Crisis Management: “Knowing what’s being said about you on social media, in traditional media, by your employees, customers, and other stakeholders often allows you to catch a negative “trend” that, if unchecked, turns into a crisis. Likewise, monitoring feedback from all stakeholders during a crisis situation allows you to accurately adapt your strategy and tactics. “

Assessing a crisis situation are the first crisis communications step you can’t take in advance. But if you haven’t prepared in advance, your reaction will be delayed. By the time it takes your in-house or quickly hired staff to manage the situation, it is probable that your client’s brand will already be in trouble.

Furthermore, a hastily created crisis communications strategy and team are never as efficient as those planned and rehearsed in advance.

Because any wise company know that sh##t  happens!

As Market Consultants we will need to set up prevention and control systems to help our clients manage different types of crisis and avoid bad news from spreading out. We need to become experts in analyzing social networks and mostly we will need to work closely with our Corporate clients and their PR experts in creating contingency plans in case something happens.

Bernstein Crisis Management mentions that: “After the fecal matter is no longer interacting with the rotating blades, the question must be asked, “What did we learn from this?A formal analysis of what was done right, what was done wrong, what could be done better next time and how to improve various elements of crisis preparedness is another must-do activity for any Crisis Communications Team.”

We believe that Corporations are already understanding the relevance of being prepared, but only 5% of Companies understand how much damage a bad rumor on social media can do to their brands.

Be prepared and ready and become an expert in analyzing social networks. This can only bring more business to your door.