I was surprised to learn that there is a formula for how to react in a crisis situation in PR.
Coomb’s strategy is to:
Attack the accuser
Wow. It’s great to have a plan so you’re not thrown into a situation with no response, but having a response ready like this seems to strip the reaction of its sincerity and spontaneity. Shouldn’t they take every situation as it comes? That’s why it’s called a “situation” because it is an individual and different set of circumstances every time. Maybe the accuser isn’t wrong. Maybe you’re not wrong! Honesty has to be key in the process with a desire to correct it. PR savvy shouldn’t mean learning a formula. It should mean learning to react in a timely, appropriate, genuine, and well-thought-out way.
If anyone’s seen the movie Adjustment Bureau, you may or may not remember the part where the main character (a politician running for office) exposes his PR reps by stating that the color of his tie was tested- to receive the most votes. Yellow would mean he didn’t take himself seriously, red meant he was wealthy, but a blue tie spoke to the working man. All this seems so manipulative and staged. PR should be less calculated and more centered on the actual feedback of the public, rather than handing out lip service.