HOW TO HANDLE BAD PRESS WITH CONFIDENCE!
While social media is often used to tell a positive and influential story of a brand, organizations can be hit with bad press. It is not uncommon for an organization to face criticism on social media, further painting a brand in a bad light. You might be asking yourself how to avoid a bad public image. What is the best way to shift a public image? By being responsive and becoming a part of the solution, you can deal with bad press and maintain a positive public image.
- RELEASE A QUICK RESPONSE
While it is important to be calm and think strategically, organizations should issue a quick response when dealing with controversy. Swift action implies that an organization takes claims seriously and is willing to be transparent with its audience. Addressing criticism effectively ensures that a brand is willing to acknowledge the criticism and speak on important issues while they are relevant. When dealing with a negative public image, there is significance in being communicative with your audience. A clear message and reliability make an organization seem more dependable, causing its audience to be more likely to listen. Audiences are relieved by fast responses that address concerns because it increases an organization’s reliability. To learn more about the impact of a brand’s message on its audience, check out our past blog about The Ultimate Guide to Message Delivery.
- DON’T GET DEFENSIVE
It is important not to be argumentative when receiving criticism on social media. When approaching a situation in which you need to address the negative press, you should remain apologetic and level-headed, and any sign of defensiveness should not be included in your response. Wait to see how the situation unfolds, and act accordingly. Instead of being defensive, your statement should demonstrate your willingness to grow as an organization. People want to know that an organization takes criticism seriously, and is willing to grow to avoid similar problems in the future. Statements will not be appealing to an audience if they seem argumentative, but they should address the concerns of users to satisfy their needs. Try to seek comprehension of the situation and address criticism thoughtfully and strategically to best build your brand’s voice.
- BECOME A PART OF THE SOLUTION
The public admires organizations that are willing to take accountability and work to find solutions. Being passive in the face of criticism only adds fuel to the fire, which can further contribute to an increase in bad press. By engaging in finding a solution and acknowledging mistakes to seek company growth alleviates a negative public perception. Actively addressing concerns shows transparency and the willingness to make things right. It is important for an organization to be in charge of its own story, and willingness to be a part of the solution helps the brand to gain control of its own narrative. In being a part of the solution, an organization is putting its audience at ease and addressing the criticism strategically.
- BE OPEN AND TRANSPARENT
Transparency helps an audience to trust a brand, opening up the conversation for constructive criticism and future brand growth. In order for an organization to maintain its reputation, it should remain open and transparent with its audience. With the willingness to acknowledge company mistakes and be vulnerable with its audience, a brand can maintain its engagement. Taking control of the organization’s story by addressing any misconceptions is a significant part of being open with users. Keeping users in the loop can allow a brand to re-establish credibility and approachability. People gravitate toward trustworthy products, so it is important to be honest with a customer base to engage users.
- HIRE A PROFESSIONAL TEAM
Hiring a professional team when dealing with bad press is a strategic and level-headed move. Working with a PR firm will help a brand in remaining composed when faced with controversy. PR firms have the skills and experience to navigate bad press and curate responses that best resonate with the public. Working with organizations to address being painted in a bad light, professional teams can minimize potential damage from criticism. Damage control that is managed by a professional team will help a company to stay organized and on track for success!
Overall, it is not uncommon for a brand to receive bad press, but by remaining transparent and being willing to become a part of the solution, an organization can maintain high engagement. Releasing a non-argumentative statement that does not pacify criticism but rather seeks company growth appeals to an audience. Working to be a part of the solution is admired and makes a brand seem more trustworthy moving forward. It may be helpful to fire a PR team to ensure that an organization is thinking strategically and ensure that a brand is viewed in a positive light.
To gain a better understanding of how to avoid bad press, visit our blog post about 4 Questions to Create Powerful Social Media Storytelling, and if you need help driving your business, contact the experts at Influence Digital Solutions today!