By: Sara Caywood
Whether you’re representing a brand, organization, team, or person, reputation management is a crucial part of any sound strategic communications plan. Reputation management plans allow communications teams and public relations professionals to prepare for crises and consistently react to minor issues. This consistency helps to build trust and confidence between the client and it's publics.
When devising a reputation management plan, it is essential to keep the client’s overall goals, values, and objectives in mind. If your client values transparency, your responses in situations where honesty is in question need to emphasize transparency as your primary strategy for handling these crises.
Another critical component to devising reputation management plans is predicting specific challenges that may face your client on an ongoing basis. The ongoing challenges that face Crest Toothpaste will be different than the challenges that face Nike. So, it is vital to use any available research about your client to understand the ongoing problems or issues that face their brand and could lead to reputation crises in the future.
While considering these elements of goals, objectives, values, and ongoing challenges, the next step is to develop your brand management plan. While creating this plan, think about who your client’s audience is, what they want from the client, and what the client wants from them. By keeping these questions in mind, you will shape your reputation management plan to direct your client to respond to crises in specific consideration of their image.
1. Monitor Digital Image
2. Response Management
3. Promote Positives
4. Follow Through
5. Continue to Evolve
Reputation and public perception are vital elements to monitor and know how to efficiently handle as a public relations professional. Keep these key steps in mind when working with your clients in the future!