Crises usually hit companies and organisations unexpectedly. Then the media, social media and other factors quickly determine what happens. Effective crisis communication therefore starts before the emergency.
We have been advising our clients for many years on how to identify and manage risks at an early stage so that a crisis does not turn into a catastrophe. We take the analysis of the potential danger and crisis preparation just as seriously as the support during or after the crisis. By crisis preparation we mean more than setting up dark sites or writing crisis manuals. For example, cultivating relationships with politicians, stakeholders and the media are important elements of effective crisis prevention for us.
It is obvious that social media presents special challenges in the event of a crisis. Where facts and corrections at best still penetrate in the classic media, they encounter emotions, abbreviated portrayals and waves of indignation in the social media. Here, more than ever, it is essential to be prepared, keep a cool head, communicate stringently, and show poise.