This week the MacComms team attended a fascinating breakfast event with The Yorkshire Post’s business editor, Mark Casci.
Amongst the coffee and croissants, Mark relayed several key messages about how a business can successfully manage its public relations and top tips on how to handle a PR crisis.
An event organised by Leeds Beckett University’s Digital Hub, the networking breakfast invited attendees to take part in a Q and A session with the business editor, who has worked in the news industry for the last 13 years.
As PR professionals, we at MacComms are already well-aware of the vital role public relations plays in a business’s operations. But to have a number of our key messages confirmed by the Yorkshire Post business editor himself was invaluable, and something we’re keen to share with other Yorkshire-based businesses that didn’t get the opportunity to attend the event.
The top takeaways (apart from the yummy pastries!) that we took away from the breakfast include:
– Always take control of the message
Is your business about to make redundancies? If so, ensure you tell the press exactly what you plan to do and how you plan to do it; describing exactly how you will resolve the situation and support employees and customers affected in the process. This means you take control the situation and puts the ball in your court, enabling only the accurate pieces of information to be communicated.
– Always tell the truth.
Mark Casci explained how ‘information breeds confidence’. Giving the public truthful information prevents messages being misconstrued and mitigates a potential backlash from stakeholders. Finding out you’ve been telling ‘porkies’ about your company’s operations will not instil confidence in your customers and prospective customers.
– Don’t be reactive, be proactive.
Have you got some exciting news to share? Do you feel you can share exclusive advice on industry topics? Can you provide expert commentary on events in the media? Be the first to deliver interesting content to journalists and reporters, taking full advantage of all the PR opportunities available to you.
– Social media is essential for PR activity
The business editor also explained how social media is one of the most effective PR and marketing tools for a business. He gave great examples such as ‘The Body Coach’ entrepreneur, Joe Wicks, who built a successful business on creating engaging social media content and using online platforms to generate dedicated brand ambassadors. Mark also explained how video content is increasingly well received by journalists, as well as strong imagery.
If you need assistance with PR, or perhaps you’d like to enlist an expert to avoid a communication mishap in the future, please do get in touch – we’d love to chat about your business’s needs.