Crisis comms support – no longer just for the big boys
Thanks to new digital marketing techniques, it’s possible for SMEs to compete with global organisations when promoting their business. With a great creative idea and some smart execution, you can reach huge numbers of your target audience without needing any agency support whatsoever. Digital marketing agencies know this and have made their service packages more affordable and flexible as a result.
There is one area of communications where it’s not recommended to go ‘DIY’ however: crisis communications. And with many corporate communications specialists insisting upon pricey retainers to manage a business’s reputation, SMEs are locked out of access to that support.
So what are the options for crisis communication support for SMEs?
1. Do some groundwork yourself to understand your exposure
The first step when establishing any crisis comms management process is to understand the potential risks your business might face. For full details of how to do this, we’ve created a helpful guide here.
2. Be careful where you cut corners
As an SME or startup, you’re small enough to be incredibly agile which means you can take advantage of new opportunities, partnerships and offers as they arise. While this is great for PR, marketing and sales, there are some places where it pays to behave like a bigger business, seeking value over affordability. Examples include:
– IT and web maintenance
– Data security
– Staff training and security checks (if required)
– Legal advice
This caution will ensure you protect your business in the long term against some of the biggest reputational threats.
3. Find an agile corporate comms consultancy – they do exist!
You can’t learn how to manage a communications crisis from a webinar or textbook. It takes years of experience to know what to say and when to say it. Therefore, crisis management is not something any business should undertake without an expert at their side.
Many P.R. and crisis communications agencies will typically charge you a fortune to work on a short term basis or insist upon a retainer. But at Mangold Consultancy, we’ve had enough of this outdated approach. Should a crisis happen, call us and you’ll get support from one of our senior team with no less than 20 years experience under their belt. It’s 24/7 support starting from as little as one day’s work. The rest of the communications sector has evolved to become flexible and agile and we have too. Here, you get what you pay for. No retainer required.
Why are we doing this? Ironically, it’s to save the reputation of those in corporate comms by making crisis support available to all organisations, not just the big boys Our goal is to build long term relationships with businesses and become their corporate comms partner.
Sometimes those partnerships start with a one-off day media training, for others it’s a couple of days advising on a challenging media investigation or a fresh pair of eyes on company position statements. We work with well-known brands, as well as SMEs, just beginning to get themselves noticed.
Protecting a business’ brand and minimising damage in a crisis requires skill and experience. And these days, the threats to businesses are in abundance. It’s now a case of when (not if) something goes wrong so make sure you have the right support in place to handle things.