Crisis PR: When the storm hits, how will you respond?

Late August and early September 2017 will be remembered in history because of the enormous impact of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma.

But how are you going to be remembered for how you responded to the needs of your clients during these two natural disasters?

In a crisis, you demonstrate what you really can do for your clients

Ask yourself:

Crisis CommunicationDid I contact my clients and ask what I could do for them?

Did I identify actions or situations where I could offer assistance?

Did I think about my client’s clients or customers? Specifically, did I point out actions or communications that would let my client’s clients and customers know they were thinking about them?

Did I make any recommendations that would benefit my client?

Did I identify any threats to my client’s business from the hurricanes?

The point is: those in the PR and communications field can underscore their usefulness and compassion for their clients by simply acknowledging they are thinking about them and their needs.

What can you do to help clients during a crisis?

Put yourself in your client’s shoes for a moment. They may be without power. They may have power, but no access to Internet, television, or telephones.

Can you make your communications facilities available to your client?

Can you relay messages to their clients or customers?

Can you access the Internet and post communications that will let your client’s clients know what is going on?

Take a cue from power companies and news organizations

Power companies are, by and large, doing a fabulous job of keeping people notified about when and where power will be restored. Their spokespeople and their employees have worked tirelessly to ensure that power company personnel are working around the clock to restore power in an orderly and timely manner and to communicate how the power restoration is progressing.

News organizations, particularly in radio, have tapped into spokespeople who can inform listeners, readers, and viewers (for those who have been able to keep their television running) what is happening.

And remember, companies that get the news out to the media first are those that will be remembered.

Look for follow up situations that can help your client

The impact of the two hurricanes, like many other disasters, will be long-term. Disasters and crises will always pose a threat to people and businesses.

Because of that, people will want to see and read about how you—and your clients—responded to the event. These are stories that have positive meaning and can illustrate your responsiveness and utility to those who can benefit from your services.

These stories deserve a place in your history—and on your website. Better yet, illustrate the stories with photos or graphics that help make the story come to life.

We are already communicating … and looking for opportunities to further communicate your story during challenging times

The Wellons Communication team has been hard at work for our clients throughout the duration of these two natural disasters.

We have identified stories that are newsworthy, and more importantly, useful to the well-being of our clients (and their clients and customers). We have moved with a sense of urgency that is demanded by the media and are continuing to serve as a source of accurate, reliable information.

To add Wellons Communications to your team and demonstrate how capably your organization addresses crisis management, call me at 407-339-0879 or email me at and put us to work for you.

Tiger Woods shoots at least a double bogey in Crisis PR

Tiger Woods
Tiger Wood has shown the world he knows how to hit a golf ball.
But he has also shown the world that he – and all of his likely well-paid advisors – knows very little about crisis PR.

Did Tiger really think the recent crash and cover-up story would just go away? That the national media and the tabloids would turn a blind eye to his transgressions?

This race out the driveway in the family Cadillac and slam into a fire hydrant and tree was much more than one bad drive off the fairway. There was no escaping this fiasco. There were a ton of things that just did not add up, and even the most rookie reporter could smell a very hot story.

This crisis was completely of Tiger’s making. His team did not blast what is left of his reputation out of the sand trap fast enough.
Yes, it was a very sticky situation. But what crisis is not a very sticky situation?

Instead of getting out in front of the storm and admitting he was human and had made some mistakes, he and his advisors waited for this whole thing to blow into a gargantuan PR mess. They should have taken the appropriate steps and admitted between carefully crafted lines that the Tiger had roared in places where he should have been very quiet.

In the celebrity world of crisis PR, Tiger just shot at least a double bogey. The real score will not be known for days.