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Mary Markovinovic. Crisis Communications. Agenda. Communications/Influence Communications Building a Communications plan Identifying your audience Developing your messages Crisis Communications/Leadership during Crisis How is it different? The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly

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Presentation Transcript
  • Communications/Influence Communications
    • Building a Communications plan
    • Identifying your audience
    • Developing your messages
  • Crisis Communications/Leadership during Crisis
    • How is it different?
    • The Good, the Bad, and the Ugly
  • Using Social Media in a Crisis
    • Benefits
    • Pitfalls
    • Strategy
basic premise
Basic Premise

Purpose of Influence Communication

...The ultimate goal of communication is to facilitate a change in behavior rather that merely to disseminate information...

UN Strategic Communications Project

why does it matter
Why Does It Matter?

We must respond to new expectations

  • Actively demonstrate trustworthy, responsible behavior – no assumptions
  • Earn confidence and trust
  • Forging strong relationships is essential
  • Increased communications
  • Watchwords are: Transparency, Accountability, Integrity, Responsibility
  • The leadership is up-front and center


“Communication Gap”

Desired Communications

Communicatins Intensity

Actual Formal






Filling The “Communication Gap”

Rumors, Commentaries,

Mis-Information, Urban Myths


Communications Intensity

Your Interpretation, Your

Frame, Your Facts


guiding principles
Guiding Principles
  • Communication begins with Listening
  • All messages shaped by Truth, Trust, Transparency
  • Themes and messages are broad and generic in planning; tailored and nuanced in execution
communication formula
Communication Formula

1. Which audiences need to be reached?

2. What change in behavior is required?

3. What messages would be appropriate?

4. Which channels of communication would be most effective?

5. How will the communication process be monitored and evaluated?

assessing your communications environment
Assessing your communications environment?
  • How do you listen/receive messages?
  • How do you share your messages?
  • What actions can you take to support your message?
  • How do you coordinate with other agencies and organizations?
  • What tools are available to share information?
  • A verbal description of how you see as the key broad issues
  • Links to high-level values
  • Aimed at Narrative or Counter Narrative
  • Examples:
    • “ U.S. military units and installations in are full support of the people of Japan, the Japan Self Defense Force, and the Government of Japan in their recovery efforts from the Great East Japan Earthquake.”
    • “We will continue to provide resources and expertise as needed and requested by Japan.”
  • An Idea You Want A Specific Audience To Consider
  • Often Linked To Recent Event
  • Aimed At Promoting Your Frame Of The Issue Or Undercutting The Frame Of The Opposition
  • Examples:
    • “We are taking prudent precautions and risk mitigation strategies during Operation Tomodachi.”
    • “All DoD personnel and eligible family members should consult with their unit medical personnel or personal medical providers regarding the current situation in Japan, potential risks, ways to mitigate possible exposure, and dosage of KI.”
crafting a message
Crafting a Message

Each Message should include at least one of the following:

  • Problem Clarification
    • (Your frame and impact of issue on audience)
  • Solution Proposal
    • (Broadly, what do you want to see change)
  • Action Call
    • (Call on audience to do something specific)
how do i know if it s working
How Do I Know If It’s Working??
  • Measures of Performance
  • Number of Press Releases/Briefings/Leaflets
  • Measures of Effectiveness
  • Change in Behavior
  • Change in Perceptions
  • They Quote You – They acknowledge you message
  • They Paraphrase You – They accept your message
  • They Claim Your Words – They internalize your message
10 gold rules of crisis communication
10 Gold Rules of Crisis Communication

Source: Communication Director YouTube Channel

dos and don ts during high emotion risk events
Dos and Don’ts during high emotion/risk events…
  • You should:
    • Demonstrate action
    • Tell the truth
    • Release only confirmed facts
    • Be Concise
    • Show Concern
    • Dispel rumors
    • Provide updates
    • Remember people who may be hurting
  • You should NOT:
    • Speculate
    • React to hostile questions
    • Place blame
    • Estimate
    • Talk off the record
    • Give exclusives
    • Reveal proprietary information
    • Indicate when all will be normal
  • Respond quickly, accurately, professionally, with care
  • Be transparent and accessible
  • Treat perceptions as fact
  • Acknowledge mistakes
  • Tailor messages to address the “angry” party
  • Note other side’s concerns
  • Make no public confrontations

Shel Holtz, ABC

chilean miners rescue coverage
Chilean Miners’ Rescue Coverage
  • Broke TV audience records between the afternoon of Oct. 12 and midnight Oct. 13 a few hours after the last victim was rescued.
  • Global news website traffic – more than 4 MILLION page views per MINUTE.
  • 104,000 Tweets per hour
  • 16,000 videos on YouTube
  • 600 million searches on Google (173 on Bing)
leadership during a crisis
Leadership during a Crisis

Source: CBS News on Youtube

leadership during a crisis1
Leadership during a Crisis

Source: CBS News on Youtube

leadership during a crisis4
Leadership during a Crisis

“After waiting three weeks to set foot on the tsunami-ravaged coast of northeastern Japan and meet with evacuees, Prime Minister Naoto Kan got more shrugs than hugs during his two-hour visit Saturday to the devastated seaside town of Rikuzentakata.” - 1st line of story by Wall Street Journal

leadership during a crisis5
Leadership during a Crisis
  • News Corp. owner Rupert Murdoch apologized for the phone-hacking scandal ignited by revelations about his News of the World newspaper in an advertisement to appear Saturday in British newspapers.
  • "We are sorry," the advertisement reads. "The News of the World was in the business of holding others to account. It failed when it came to itself. We are sorry for the serious wrongdoing that occurred."
  • Murdoch, who signed the message, says that he wishes his company had acted faster andthat apologizing is "not enough."


leadership during a crisis6
Leadership during a Crisis

don t make things worse
Don’t make things worse…

the reality of crises today
The reality of crises today
  • Erupt with unprecedented speed
  • An insatiable thirst for news
  • Anyone can break news
  • Porous boundaries between social & mainstream media

Shel Holtz, ABC


News Cycle Impact: The First 24 Hours

Hour 18

Hour 24

Hour 12

Hour 6




0 Hour






Ogilvy PR & WSJ Asia

rise of first informers
Rise of First Informers
  • Citizen Journalists
    • Source or scout for localized news
    • Contributors of on-the-ground information, photos, & videos, during a crisis
    • Social activists

YouTube Video – Neda dying in Iran


social media is it a fad
Social Media: Is it a Fad?

Or is it a Social Media Revolution?

using social media in a crisis
Using Social Media in a Crisis

Twitter saving lives in wake of Japan disaster

According to a report by the BBC, Japanese doctors are applauding the social networking and microblogging site Twitter, calling it “an excellent system” that allows them to communicate with patients to let them know where they can obtain vital medication. The doctors’ appreciation of the service came to light on Friday after letters were published in The Lancet, one of the world’s leading medical journals.

FEMA Embraces Social Media

In the aftermath of the earthquake that struck Haiti in January 2010, wireless communications returned quickly - to the surprise of Craig Fugate, administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA)."We assumed until Haiti that wireless communications would be unreliable," Fugate told a hearing of the Senate Subcommittee on Disaster Recovery and Intergovernmental Affairs Thursday, but wireless communication was more resilient than anticipated. Indeed, the first communication services that returned for the public after the earthquake were wireless services.Using their wireless devices, people trapped in debris or rubble were able to text or use social media to call for help, Fugate recalled. With the help of cell phone providers, the US Agency for International Development and the United Nations were able to pinpoint their locations and send urban search and rescue teams to free them.

using social media in a crisis1
Using Social Media in a Crisis

Japan Disaster Sparks Social Media Innovation

Figures released this week show that millions flocked to sites like Twitter following the earthquake and tsunami. Its audience grew by a third to 7.5 million users during March 7-13 compared with the previous week, according to the Nielsen NetRatings Japan.

The numbers underscore the increasingly valuable role that social media, particularly Twitter, can play in the wake of natural disasters. The microblogging site helped drive fundraising after the earthquake in Haiti last year, and it served as a critical communication tool after the New Zealand earthquake in February.

Twitter was already a big hit in Japan, where more than three-quarters of the population is connected to the Internet. The earthquake convinced even more users of its value as a communication lifeline.

how social media can be used during a crisis
How Social Media can be used During a Crisis
  • Before the crisis – help educate & train (general public, disaster personnel, network organizations)
  • During a crisis
    • Provide real time information updates (ex. Haiti – search & rescue aid)
    • Help account for people
    • Share photos, video, data via crowdsourcing, etc.
    • Quash rumors
  • After a crisis – fundraise for disaster relief
developing a strategy
Developing a Strategy
  • Communicating to your audiences
    • Who/What are the demographics of the people you are trying to communicate with?
    • When/How do you communicate with people before and during a crisis?
developing a strategy1
Developing a Strategy
  • Who is running your socialnetwork presence?
  • How will it be run during a crisis?

Chile’s President Sebastian Pinera

what does this mean to government comprehensive crisis management strategy
What Does this Mean to Government Comprehensive Crisis Management Strategy?
  • If it’s two-way information, how are you gathering data to use to help people during a crisis?
    • How are you verifying/validating this information?
    • What is your policy on correctingrumors or bad information?
  • What is your policy on answering media queries via social networks?
  • What is your policy on using social media at work?