Detailed planning and simulations are crucial for successful crisis communications because of the immediacy of social media, CommCore executives told communications professionals at a crisis communications seminar sponsored by National Capital Chapter of the Public Relations Society of America.
Practitioners from more than 20 companies and organizations learned how to incorporate evolving and emerging social media platforms into a crisis communications plan from CommCore Senior Vice Presidents Dale Weiss and Nicholas Peters.
“In today’s social media world you don’t have the luxury of time and fixed deadlines,” Peters said. “News about crises breaks across multiple platforms simultaneously in real time. And in that first hour, you need to be already engaged rather than trying to figure out what your plan is.”
Weiss and Peters conducted two interactive social media-based simulations that required the audience to break into work groups. Complete with fake reporters and social media posts, the participants were tasked with creating a multifaceted crisis communication strategy.
A recent survey of 300 companies revealed that 57 percent do not have an up to date crisis communications plan that includes a social media component.
“Even if you have one, a plan only exists on paper until it has been tested. A simulation gives you a chance to put a plan into practice and see if it needs updating and what are your strengths and vulnerabilities,” said Weiss.
CommCore Consulting Group is a privately held specialty communications firm serving businesses, government agencies, and non-profit organizations around the world for the past 25 years. The company specializes in strategic and tactical communications development and implementation across all industry sectors, organizational crisis planning and response, executive media and presentation training,message development, C Suite leadership and staff internal communications skills development. CommCore is led by its president and CEO, Andrew D. Gilman – a lawyer, award-winning journalist, and co-author of the best-selling book Get To The Point. CommCore is headquartered in Washington, D.C., and has offices in New York City, Los Angeles, & Dallas.