3 Public Relations Disasters and How to Avoid Them

It’s the reason you toss and turn when you have that nightmare at night. You know, the one that wakes you up in a cold sweat immediately reaching for your phone to make sure everything is alright. It’s the threat of a public relations disaster. By using our tips on how to avoid them you’ll keep your squeaky clean reputation sparkling while others are going down the public relations drain.

The Mistweet at 12AM

Your social media employee is great. She/he always comes up with great content to keep your readers engaged and coming back to your page for more. You get tons of likes and shares and you’re beginning to see the value in social media. You may even say things are going pretty swell. Until your young social media employee tweets about how “crunk” she’s getting at midnight on a Saturday. Avoid this public relation disaster by limiting and controlling the amount of devices that can be logged into social media accounts. Make it a company policy that social media accounts cannot be linked up to personal cellphones. It will save you the heartache.

Information Gets Leaked

Every company has something they aren’t proud of or don’t want the public to know about. It’s natural and it’s the case with almost every business. It isn’t necessarily a bad thing either. Everyone makes mistakes and that’s just human nature. A good company simply does damage control internally and moves on. But what about when that information gets out to the public? Being involved in a scandal isn’t good business. Ensure employees sign NDAs and that all information is on a need to know basis. By keeping things under wraps internally it becomes a way to identify the person who may have leaked information and take action.

A Defective Product or Lousy Service Review

We’ve all heard about the big name car company that needs to recall all brand new models due to the brakes randomly failing. That’s not a good look. You can hire tons of quality control staff and go through serious measures (as you should) to ensure you’re putting safe products and offering valuable services on the market or you can operate smartly. Avoid this mishap by going the extra mile during testing. Put every aspect through the ringer and don’t rush to mass produce items. A few extra days in the warehouse, laboratory or training can mean a whole world free of troubles down the line simply because you rushed to get a product out there.

Do your best to run an honest company and try to avoid living in constant fear of a public relations disaster. By no means be careless, but operate honestly and work hard. Your company and brand is what you make of it. Do the right thing and offer your customers the best. It’ll show in everything you do!

Follow these tips and you’ll be set up for smooth sailing free of rough waters.


Ronn Torossian

Ronn Torossian is the founder and CEO of 5WPR and one of the most well-respected Public Relations professionals in the United States. Ronn is the author of "For Immediate Release: Shape Minds, Build Brands, and Deliver Results with Game-Changing Public Relations."

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