It’s a common experience among many communications professionals: After helping a company build its brand reputation during good times, we in the creative industries often see our efforts unravel the moment uncertainty hits and senior management decide to cut spending on brand communications. It’s understandable – but it is also an error – since uncertain times are exactly when a company should remain visible and emphasise its reputation and strength, through maintaining its profile.
With the recent news that the UK is to leave the EU, there is a period of doubt as everyone digests the uncertainty of what’s ahead. However, companies have prepared for this scenario and once initial reactions have subsided we should get back to business as usual while the government makes preparations for Brexit.
Essentially, when organisations feel the going gets tough, the tough make their brands stronger through targeted, cost-effective tactics delivered by PR professionals that build trust across all stakeholders.
During unstable times, many companies go silent, forcing their stakeholders to interpret their actions. As we all know, hiding from a potential problem seldom makes it go away. PR can offer a wide range of strategies to help a company maintain its brand presence and navigate through difficult conditions.
Social media techniques, in particular, are a cost-effective, fast and efficient strategy at delivering the right message and communicating directly with consumers. Social media is able to make a connection to brands in a way that educates, entertains and enhances the lives of today’s smartphone-wielding consumers.
Another tactic to build trust is by building the profile of company heads. By developing them into sought-after media spokespeople, blog columnists or public speakers it can contribute directly to trust building.
Most forward-thinking business leaders will acknowledge the often-deemed ‘intangible’ ROI from building their public profiles. They will understand that uncertain times call for tougher efforts to fortify their brand, and creative, cost-conscious communication strategies will help them emerge from uncertain times in a stronger position.
Essentially PR is all about reputation management, talking to influencers, understanding an audience and helping to increase profits. PR can help to influence how people see your company. In a market (no matter what your industry), that is as saturated as it is today, it is all about getting the coverage and attention you need, to get you through uncertain times. Often companies grab the limelight with an unusual fact about their business that makes people do a double-take, or by affiliating themselves with news or topical events.
Change is never comfortable but with a positive mindset it is amazing what gems can emerge. Success builds success and by maintaining a ‘comfort zone’ of communications surrounding your business, your reputation and subsequent customer buy-in will continue to secure sales. We welcome any support or information the Liz Lean PR team can provide. Please call us on 01202 701828 for a free consultation.