How to avoid PR nightmares this Halloween

There’s no need to be afraid of any PR nightmares this Halloween.

A PR problem can mean different things for different businesses. However, no matter what the nature of the nightmare, there are steps you can take to avoid any scary surprises.

PR Nightmare #1 – No press coverage

Do you find yourself firing off press releases to journalists but with no results? It can be disheartening when this happens, but it can be due to a number of different reasons – some in your control and some out of your control. Firstly, quality over quantity is vital when it comes to PR stories. Always ensure your press releases are newsworthy and have a sharp news hook. Secondly, take a close look at the actual press release itself. Is there an eye-catching headline? Does your intro sum up the top line of the story succinctly? Have you included emotive quotes from the person involved? Finally, which photographs have you sent to illustrate your release? Are they engaging? Do they represent the story? If you’re struggling to secure regular high-quality press coverage in your target media, I offer a PR package for one-off projects. Find out more here.

PR Nightmare #2 – A PR crisis is looming

Any business, big or small, is at risk of a crisis. Preparing a basic plan in advance lowers your chance of incurring irreversible long-term damage. To begin with, identify your crisis communications team. Think about who will speak to the media. Do you have the phone number of a trusted PR professional who you can call upon to help? If you haven’t already, establish monitoring systems, such as those on social media, and develop initial holding statements that will guide you in the first stages of any crisis.

PR Nightmare #3 – Dealing with keyboard warriors

Handling online complaints is an issue that’s especially common in the hospitality industry. However, it’s also something that no business can afford to ignore in the modern age of social media. Rather than picking up the phone or sending an email to complain, disgruntled customers are now much more likely to air their complaints publicly. This could be in the form of a Trip Advisor review, a Facebook post or a tweet. 

Although you might not be able to remove the complaint permanently, there are easy ways to manage this and diffuse the situation. Always deal with complaints quickly and most importantly, politely. For example, if you receive a negative Facebook comment, politely ask them if you can call them to discuss further. This way, you’re taking the conversation away from a very public online arena and bringing the control back into your own hands. 

If you’ve found yourself having to battle these PR nightmares alone and would like some advice, drop me a line. Email danielle@bloomincreative.co.uk or call 07837 858195.

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