Reputation management during crisis isn’t only for the time when someone jeopardizes your image or criticizes you. On the internet, when everything is peaceful and reassuring for your business, there could be devastating news going on somewhere else in the world. This is very probable and as a human being you are responsible. I said as a human being because there are people behind your company and they should project themselves sometimes out there in the public to indicate who they are and what they care for. The word is “humanitarian Aid”!
Who Needs Your Humanitarian Aids?
Good question. The answer is all humanity unless you discriminate against some of them! That’s why it’s called “Humanitarian Aids”. You get out of your cells and offer help to those who are in need, period. This is something that you can do no matter how large or small the extension of your help is. Just ask yourself if you feel you’re responsible as a human being at this time if you can do anything and listen to your heart. Then, proceed.
If you are looking for such opportunities, the only thing you need to do is to check out the news on your TV, radio, news website, etc and you will find out who needs help all across the world. Everyday you hear about the people in hard times as a result of wildfire, earthquake, flood, etc. Go through the entire year passed by and see how many times you could help, but you missed the opportunity. These are the cases where your travel company’s reputation management during crisis should have been successfully handled.
What does such crisis have to do with your company image? Well, when you go out to help others, people see who’s behind the travel company, hotel association, cruise corporation, airline, etc and relate to them. They talk about you and admire your help. The word of mouth works its way through different media and reaches where it needs to reach.
How Word of Mouth Works & How to Boost It
People have got their own ways of doing this and you may not have any mechanism to find out. They may talk about you while chatting in a coffee shop late afternoon, while hanging out with friends in the gym, etc. You can lead it the way you want it in particular measurable ways online.
These days, as soon as something important happens, web users go to their social profiles and look for the news about it. They will find out what’s going on, check out trending stories, etc. If they have some piece of online content about you, they are going to spread the word more easily. It’s up to you how to create this. It could be a simple post on facebook, a short tweet on Twitter, an interview that goes viral on social sites, etc.
A more professional reputation management approach for your travel company, which helps your image much more efficiently, is to use online press releases. Your company can help people during crisis by itself or pioneer in fundraising and getting the “Humanitarian Aids” to the point where it’s needed. In both cases, you can announce this in a press release and then carry that out.
At this stage, you can feed the social media with your news story through your accounts and redistribute it via your fans and followers. Then, the word of mouth begins to work for you. Think of advertising budget your business allocates to promoting your business annually. Can’t you give away part of that to this cause? I assure you this will work at least as well as some of the best advertising campaigns you set up here and there, if not much better with long-lasting results.
Communicate with Your Communities throughout the Relief Provision Period
One press release isn’t enough. Depending on the size of your helping job, you may get involved in this process for quite some time. You should make the most of it by communicating with the real-world and online communities that are connected to you now. Give them statistics of the collected items and tell them how much more is needed. Tell them how you’ve reached to the disaster-stricken area and use a press release service that allows you to publish photos and videos with your text.
Again, you’ve provided fed the social media to share your news. People are hungry for this and appreciate it. You’ve carried out your responsibility as a human being, spend some financial and human resources to get this done. Consequently, the real people, who have seen this, will witness and provide testimonial on what you’ve done and how you’ve accomplished it.
This will remain in people’s minds and hearts. Following such reputation management practices during crisis, your travel company can increase its popularity among the communities where local people are struggling with the hard time’s issues. Also, among the web users and those who are outside the disaster areas you’ve created an image that attracts everyone like a magnet.
Among those who get benefit there are people who will work as your ambassadors for the best publicity during the years to come. You build an image that speaks to the heart of the people. You boost your company image infinitely before any complaint tarnishes it.
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