During a crisis, it is important that companies narrow down on a single core message. A core message is a company’s stand on a crisis, one that the entire team can get behind. It is also crucial that only one designated spokesperson is appointed to deal with all public appearances & media questions. All the outgoing communication by this spokesperson should revolve around the core message you have agreed upon. Here is a handy checklist that you can follow while arriving at a decision on your core messaging.
Reflects your longstanding beliefs: The core message should comprise the company’s values and should reflect its mission & vision statements. This is the time to tell your stakeholders that how much you believe in your own organization’s values. For example, if you have been a company that has always spoken about your employees and their well-being as a priority, in all your communication, this is the time to speak about the best practices you as an organization has put in place for your employees during a crisis.
All for One: The core message should be backed by all the stakeholders. All of them including the internal team should be fully convinced with the messaging to ensure that the further course of action has the desired outcomes.
Believable message: The message should be believable and possible to execute within the resources available or could be made available to the company quickly. It should reflect the existing leadership style of the company to ensure that it is authentic and believable.
PR Team: Your reputation managers have their ear to the ground and understand what will work with the media and the audience at large. They should have the last say on the validity of the core message. Go out with it only and only if it is backed by your PR team wholeheartedly.
Walk the Talk: Just getting a core message is not enough. It will have credibility only if you implement it. Work out a way to back the message with seamless on-ground implementation and leverage it to build confidence in the company’s commitment to resolving the crisis, with the entire team.
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