Did your customers, vendors and employees hear about your company news from the media?
In many instances, they should have heard it from you first. That’s specially the case if it’s dramatic news that might leave your business partners and employees wondering what’s going on – a situation that can foster harmful rumors and, in the case of employees, lost productivity due to anxiety.
Before you send out a news release or company announcement, consider the impact on your employees, customers, vendors and business partners. There’s often a good reason to let them know first. Those reasons can include preventing confusion, building excitement, and letting those key constituencies know you value your relationships with them.
Lay Down the Ground Rules
There’s a proper way to preview your news with those select groups. In some cases, you’ll want to ask people to keep the news to themselves and avoid sharing it via social media. If the news relates to a major change in business, you’ll want to tell people what the goals are and how they’ll benefit.
Timing is important. Consider telling your close constituencies important news a day or more before it’s publicly released. That means you’ll need to prepare those announcements earlier and, if regular mail is being used to tell vendors and customers, the mail delivery schedule needs to be known. Some contacts may warrant a personal phone call. If the news relates to a company sale or acquisition, make sure the deal is finalized before sharing the news.
Monitor Social Media
If the news is sensitive, monitor social media to determine whether anyone has leaked the story, and whether they’ve commented on it negatively.
Once your news is public, make sure you promote it via your company’s social media accounts, including your company LinkedIn page, your company’s Facebook page, your Twitter account and any other social media you use – all with links back to the full announcement on your website.
How you handle news announcement previews should be part of your strategic public relations plan. That will provide the guidance to ensure the right steps are taken in the right order for the right reasons.
The team at PKI Digital Marketing can help you create a strategic public relations plan, and then manage your company’s public relations for the maximum benefit. Contact David Niles to learn more.