The LEWIS team launched a new Issues and Crisis Management services division last week by hosting a highly successful crisis comms industry event at London’s funky Soho Hotel. Fresh from presenting on the Today Programme, BBC Radio 4’s Business Presenter Adam Shaw chaired the breakfast seminar, entitled Crisis 101, with LEWIS PR’s Chief Operating Officer Paul Charles and Director of Media Strategy and Public Affairs Clarence Mitchell speaking about their experiences and offering the audience some top crisis management tips.
After outlining the ever increasing need for LEWIS PR's new service offering, Paul and Clarence gave a brief, but essential, run down on how to safeguard reputation – be it your corporate or individual profile – in the multi-platform, 24/7, social media era. They rounded it off with a 30 minute Q&A from the invited audience of influential communications professionals.
Ahead of the event, LEWIS had also commissioned a YouGov survey around crisis communications to gauge the public’s thoughts on how corporate crises should be handled. The survey identified BP’s Gulf of Mexico oil spill crisis as the most damaging, beating both British Airways (for its disastrous opening of Heathrow’s T5) and Eurostar (for the ‘stranded train’ incident). 40 per cent of respondents cited BP.
The research results also showed that 46 per cent of respondents believe being ‘open and transparent’ in a crisis is more important than ‘reacting quickly’ or ‘expressing regret.’ More than three quarters (78 per cent) also thought traditional media platforms (TV and newspapers) are still the most damaging for crisis-hit brands with only 12 per cent of people polled believing social media platforms to be a more serious threat to brand reputation.
The launch of LEWIS’ crisis division, with its new crisis-reactive LEWIS GO Team, marks an exciting new venture for the agency and will be fully supported by our team of in-house journalist. Read more here.