Even for the most well-prepared organization, things can blow up once in a while. Just ask Samsung.
Within the past year or so, exploding mobile phones, passengers being dragged down the aisle and production companies purging executives and big-screen stars have all faced media scrutiny and angry public opinion. These moments of crisis have threatened brand reputations and customer loyalty.
Such crises undoubtedly merit an immediate call to the PR and legal departments, but the experienced know that the real key to surviving them involves employing the help of a pollster as well. Because when brand reputation and customer loyalty are at stake, or when facing government intervention or legal action, there is no substitute for statistically valid research to help guide messaging and targeting.
Based on our experience with crises, we have developed a recommended action plan for businesses in the immediate aftermath of a disaster. There are four crucial steps:
- Gather immediate feedback from those affected through social listening tools.
- Conduct qualitative and quantitative research to gauge broader impact and strategize a management approach.
- Track reactions throughout the crisis to assess public response and uncover new information.
- Follow with post-crisis research to repair brand image and prepare for the future.
If used correctly, the action plan can help you crystallize your strategy and approach to navigating these turbulent conditions. Here are some specific examples of how polling and other opinion research has been used to guide the response to crises.
Identifying the right messengers
During crisis management, deciding who should respond is often just as important as the response itself. And sometimes, it’s not the person you might expect who should be tasked with delivering your organization’s message....
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