B2B Public Relations: Do You Know What to Do in a Crisis?

What would you do if your company experienced a crisis that resulted in bad press coverage or a loss of sales?

Many in the business-to-business world tend to think that they might not have to deal with crises as much as companies more in the public eye do. That may be true to some extent, but you never know what could happen: you might have a faulty product, there could be a fire at your factory that shuts down production, workers could go on strike, or one of your executives could be involved in a serious accident or major scandal.

So if something comes up, you need to be ready to manage it and contain any resulting damage as much as possible.

Marketing magazine “BtoB” surveyed more than 200 companies in 2007 and found that more than half of them did not have a crisis plan in place. Of those that did, only half of them had a trained spokesperson, and about 10 percent of them weren’t sure they’d actually be able to implement their plan.

Unfortunately, the most common response to a crisis is to remain as tight-lipped as possible. Often, companies may release a very basic statement, heavily censored by their legal department, and then refuse to answer any more questions that journalists pose. B2B companies in particular also tend to ignore the importance of social media, thinking that the public doesn’t need to know what’s going on. All of that might seem like the quickest way to shut down a crisis, but the truth is, it’s more likely to destroy your reputation. That can have far-reaching ramifications, to the point where clients and other companies simply don’t want to do business with you.

So what is the answer? An effective B2B public relations agency can help you get prepared. A PR expert knows the best way to properly disseminate information, through both traditional and new forms of media. You’ll learn why it’s just as important to manage your reputation in the public eye, as it is to do so among clients and colleagues. A PR specialist can also train executives how to handle not only the media, but employees as well, which can do more than you might think to contain a crisis.

If you think you could benefit from some help preparing for crisis management, get in touch with Ripley PR today. We can show you exactly what you need to do to handle any situation that might arise, with grace and finesse.

Heather Ripley, Founder/CEO

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