Smooth Seas Never Made a Skilled Sailor
It’s important to understand the difference between a crisis and a problem so that you can appropriately sail the social seas.
Planning: Setting Your PR Anchor
Be Proactive: Understand your environment, track potential issues and start preparing to address them before they become a problem.
Be Strategic: Develop your crisis management plan, including how you’ll share information. Know what tools you’ll use and who will be involved.
Action: Sailing the Social Seas
Be Reactive: Now it’s time to get crisis prepared. Practice, practice, practice – run a mock simulation to better train your team and get everyone on board.
Be Prepared: Bring in the right trainers and set up a committee so you can start developing action plans now. Set a date for when these will go live.
Feedback: Choosing when to Tack or Jibe
Recover: It’s important to know the impact of your crisis. Economic, social and stakeholder factors are all important in the recover phase.
Know When to Tack or Jibe: Decide whether your events are worth sailing through or if you need to change direction.
Sample Crisis Planning Checklist
Get started on defining probability and impact of events so you can further establish your plan.
Ben Pankonin 0:10
Welcome to our webinar today it is all hands on deck and today it’s myself, Ben Pankonin and Dani Chaney. We are going to be talking about why social media should be part of your PR plan. So welcome with us today. Dani. We’ve been doing some webinars together for a while but I am excited about this one because we were having a conversation earlier about how how you kind of came into this industry. Yeah, that’s really fun to hear. So
Dani Chaney 0:38
yeah, I mean, growing up, I always kind of wanted to be Lois Lane and be that traditional kind of print journalist, but my career has really shifted a lot more into digital and social and really, for me, the the biggest difference is that the way that we communicate in our PR has changed so much. It takes you several hours to write a press release, and by that time your social media followers are already out there. making a decision about your crisis or talking about it. So I think really the the pivot in my career was just the fast moving environment of news has changed so much that it’s so fascinating to see customers, the first thing they do is go to social to figure out why is product down or what’s happening with an organization or company. And to me, that’s very fascinating. So really, this is a topic that is close to me, especially right now and just figuring out how your business can stay ahead of that.
Ben Pankonin 1:27
Well, I think that’s super interesting, too. Like, you’re sort of going back to like wanting to be Lois Lane, right. In the in the journalism community community, right. When we think of print journalism, right. Obviously, we’ve seen a dramatic decline and yeah, more rapid than we’ve ever seen before. But, you know, when I talk with young people and say, Look, brands need your help. They need your help as content writers, as you know, if that’s a career path, so I think that’s that’s an awesome way that you’ve sort of figured out that this is, this is what everybody needs.
Dani Chaney 1:59
Oh yeah, I think The way that we communicate is changing and social media really does change that. And, you know, we’ve talked a lot about how, you know, banks and credit unions have these plans in place that they put into place when a disaster happens, but the communications that happen from that could maybe be relooked at and few social media and that is a majority of our partners are asking a lot of questions about how they do that. Right.
Ben Pankonin 2:24
Right. Well, and professionally, you’re also going back to school and doing some, some really cool work there too.
Dani Chaney 2:31
Yeah, we’re actually setting PR crisis’s right now. So this is actually really really good timing to talk about the the four phases that happen and how we can infuse social into that.
Ben Pankonin 2:39
Awesome Well, we’re, we’re going to try to tackle some there’s a there’s a couple PR crisis is that we’re going to tackle that will close to me. And so that’s that’s fun. I love the examples you put together for us. But you know, as we’re kind of setting those up, you know, you’ve got a whole broad range plan of kind of how to put these together and I I’ll put a little nugget out there. I know that you also we’re working with the content team to, to create some checklists and things at the end. Yeah. So
Dani Chaney 3:08
yeah, yeah, we’re working on a checklist that will will kind of explain as we go through this. But really, you know, it’s hard to get started. So we want to kind of prep you with a checklist on on how to approach your crisis and how to rank it, and then how to tackle it, which ones to go with first. So we’ll get to that a little bit later.
Ben Pankonin 3:23
Awesome. But, you know, things that can start a crisis, but
there’s endless Yes,
yes. But yeah, so, you know, I think we talked about it earlier. Sometimes we’ve got to kind of think through that when we’re putting in our business interruption plan, right. And I’ve done some of those seminars with sunguard and some other companies years ago, when I was doing kind of more in the security and disaster recovery space. And we sort of like are brainstorming all of these things, which is a scary thing to do.
Dani Chaney 3:53
Yeah, and I think too, and not only understanding when a crisis is but also understanding who it impacts it impacts people at all levels. If you don’t communicate correctly with your employees and impacts them, obviously, it’s going to impact your customers, if it’s product facing, there are so many your local community, there are so many factors that go into this. And it can of course, impact all of those things too. But, you know, this listing here is not comprehensive, and that your natural disaster on the south is different than our natural disaster in the Midwest, you know, how often what are the chances of those happening versus an acquisition, we did get some questions on how that could be a PR crisis, just depending on thoughts and feelings of how that comes together. So we’ll go into a little bit detail on that as we continue. But I think the first thing is really defining Is this a Is this a crisis or a problem? So that’s really what we want to start with is because I think a lot of people think a crisis is a problem. And we really just want to start by distinguishing the two of those. So we all know that this crisis example obviously Wells Fargo had a total outage of their their service. So I would definitely consider that a crisis it impacted. The organization impacted. The customers impacted their staff they needed to communicate, we all saw the communications on social media. And then one of the things that I get a lot in the clients that I work with is that they often think that negative comments or a crisis when in reality, those are more of a problem. So one of the things that I did include in here is, this particular example was a negative comment that was on every single post that disrespective bank had posted in the last couple of months. And that respective bank actually turned off their reviews. And so this person didn’t have anywhere to go. So they were just spamming them with this. And from what I could see, this particular bank was not responding to this person, and maybe they have taken it offline, but I couldn’t see that because this person was really kind of spamming them. So yes, that is a problem. But there are so much more that goes into that and we’ll get into a little bit more detail as we continue on here.
Ben Pankonin 6:00
Yeah. So when we think about kind of putting all hands on deck and and what, what that means you’ve laid out a plan here for us. Yeah,
Dani Chaney 6:08
what was kind of see theme? So really that first step and you know, what we get a lot of questions about is planning. So what we’re what we’ll really talk about in that section is putting together and ranking the items that could impact you most. And then we’ll go into the action area. So we’ll talk a lot about what are the things that you can do? How can you involve your team and then we actually included some feedback and I used the the attacker jibe here to kind of say, you know, do sell through the wind and you know, kind of accept it for what it is contribute to the conversation, then, you know, you kind of move on as a business, or do you kind of maneuver and go around the situation and use it as an opportunity to reposition or reput your brand as well. So those are kind of the areas we’ll we’ll cover today. And don’t forget, if you have any questions at all, we’ll be tracking those so you can chat them in with us.
Ben Pankonin 6:56
Yeah. And feel free. We’re starting to get some Twitter traffic. Yeah, I think I just tweeted out Is it a crisis or a problem that I’m taking a selfie? Well, while you’re talking, but you know, when you know, when we have these kind of interactions, I have a couple questions that I’m going to hold here for a little bit that just came in. But, you know, we’ll try to hit those as we’re going. But, you know, let’s, let’s sort of figure out where do we start? Like, where do we anchor Danny?
Dani Chaney 7:21
Yes. And I think, you know, I wanted to use here a really great example from a bank that had approached us to say, Hey, you know, we’re having a hurricane in our area, they’re based in Louisiana. And they really approached us to kind of say, Hey, we want to get information out in front of people, it’s definitely going to hit us. So this was just one part of that. So really, what what they were doing when they contacted me is that they were they were in that environmental phase. So they were reading, they were listening, they’re watching the news. Natural disasters are a really good one in this proactive phase to kind of use as an example here. They were tracking the potential issue. Obviously the storm was moving quickly. They wanted to tailor their news as this issue emerge. So the This example here is, Hey, you know, if if this hurricane were to come and and basically hit a majority of our branches, how do people get their banking done? And so really what we wanted to do is disseminate that information out. And they started preparing plans to address this emerging SEO. So we were letting people know, Here are tips that you might want to know. And then how how does it impact them? Obviously, they’ll need to continue to address this issue as hurricanes happen every season. So this is a really great example of one just staying proactive and planning is important and natural disasters are obviously a good one to filter through for this example. Awesome. Yeah. And we’re going to talk about a bunch of natural disasters.
Ben Pankonin 8:43
Yeah. Which I think is a great way to start thinking about it. You know, early on it social insurance. There were there were three of us. There were three of us. Were sitting around an office and we had the fire alarm go off. And it was really interesting because we went to the office We shop across the street with our laptops, right? our servers are hosted in the cloud. Right? So, you know, we connected. And it was amazing to see, you know, I sort of sat down with the team at that time. You know, this was six years ago, and I said, hey, what? What would we have to do? Right? If this was prolonged if that building actually was burning down, and his amazing thought process, because what happened was, it was all about communications. It really didn’t have anything to do with data. It didn’t have anything to do with those sorts of things. Obviously, every scenario is different. If that had had been, you know, our servers, we would have a different story. But yeah, it was an interesting process. And so, so I love this process. You’re sort of laying out of how do we plan that Yeah. Or that
Dani Chaney 9:46
can seem really overwhelming. You know, when we look at defining these events, we did list some on here. So obviously, your products being down for instance, what had happened to Wells Fargo, that is what I would consider a level five terms of impact, the probability of it happening sort of depends on what your infrastructure is. So in this, I would definitely say, you know, list those events. And this is the checklist that we’ll be providing is we’re going to put down some of these. So it makes it easier for you to rank them and then rank the impact, then it’s up to you to kind of prepare that plan. So in terms of a natural disaster, if you live in the Midwest, and you’re dealing with hurricanes versus you know, living and dealing with hurricanes, obviously, there are other natural disasters that impact that that disgruntled customer, which was more of a problem, I didn’t want to add that in here, because that can become a crisis kind of just depending on the mentality of that person. And then obviously, a data breach, while the likeliness of it happening might be lower on your list, the impact of it is actually pretty high. So it’s important in this productivity phase that you you define those events and that you rank their probability and not only the impact, obviously, some of these are going to be higher and probability the impact and vice versa. So just making that list and Making sure that you can define will make your financial institution more prepared. Awesome. So this next category, you know, when we talk about those five levels, level one is still when I would consider a problem, you might be able to use a pre approved response that you’ve set up to respond to that person, for instance, that disgruntled customer, obviously was posting on every single post, but you know, you will have people that will give you feedback in those instances, and you’re still in that problem phase. Social assurance makes it really great to set up some of those predictive responses that are already approved by your compliance team with a variation of Hey, we just swap out the name and might say, hey, Danielle, and then you’re addressing that person. individually. That level two problem is, you know, you might involve another person, you might create a unique response, this might be something that’s really unique to them. That level three is sort of the in between where you could follow a level two or a level four depending on the situation. So I would definitely say that middle ground is sort of hard to define that level four is when you notify your executive team. And that might be something that’s going to hit so many more people at your organization and that level five, it involves them. So you might want a statement from the president, you might want a statement. That’s a higher level crisis. You know, one of the things that we saw in the Wells Fargo is that they did communicate, I think they let their branches open an hour later, but we’ll get to a little bit later how they disseminate that information out and maybe when they should have pulled someone in. So when I say levels one through five, this is a really good tool that will provide in that checklist that will say, Hey, this is how you define it. And this is maybe situation that you should use. But of course, feel free to modify if you feel yours doesn’t necessarily need five, and it might need four. So and then again, you know, we kind of bring this up, I included this screenshot here, because I think it’s really important. Starting at the bottom and actually working your way up is kind of how they notified. The idea is that you go from the proactive phase to the strategic phase. So really what you focus On is sharing information until it escalates into a crisis, which it did. Because you can see several on several of these posts, those numbers are getting higher and higher, people are starting to understand how it’s impacting them. It’s starting to turn into something a lot larger than I think Wells Fargo thought when they were first. It ended up being a fire in their their warehouse, and that was where their servers were then impacted their customers all over the country. So the next step in here is something that I think they’re still working on, obviously, as a brand, generally, but the idea is that the court of public opinion matters and your social media, overall opinion and feel does matter. In this instance, you want to make sure that despite a negative or an impact impacting situation that you are presenting yourself in a way that still makes you approachable.
Ben Pankonin 13:45
Yeah, well, I think you know, a lot of times in in PR and social media we sort of have this attitude like the the old mike tyson quote, where it’s like, everybody has a plan until you get punched in the face, right? We’re like, well, but the reality is, you know, Even for a boxer, right? There’s training for a long time. Yeah. Before that, before that how hopefully happens. But, you know, I think for us too, it’s sort of figuring out, hey, if we can put this alongside of that, but as business interruption plan, we can put those things alongside of it, that makes it we can have an ability to be more strategic about how we think about things. And so I appreciate what you’re sort of moving from is it’s not just planning. It’s not just sort of thinking strategically. It’s kind of setting out a roadmap.
Dani Chaney 14:32
Exactly. Yeah, we’re in the business of communication. And that’s key here and that strategy phase because you can’t just have a plan in place and then understand that you you could those things could happen and then not know how to communicate it. So really, that’s the key here is better understanding how to do that.
Ben Pankonin 14:49
Cool. And in your, obviously your court of public opinion is, you know, that’s the like the Jay Baer quote where he says, Hey, you know, it’s a spectator sport
Dani Chaney 14:57
at this point. So, yeah, and we will went over a lot in this section. So really, I’m just re outlining here, the three steps for setting that social anchor. So don’t forget that crisis planning list is key. We’ll be sending out a little bit of information about that on our landing page after this webinar, so you could download a sheet. Step two is that crisis management, which will actually get into a little bit more later. But we talked a little bit about tackling those levels four and five first in terms of impact and how it impacts your financial brand, and then start preparing for that. So again, I mentioned that social insurance, you can set up pre approved responses, whatever that tool it is that you use, you can utilize the tools you have to better prepare some of those one I’ve responded. I think the other thing that we’ve worked through a lot of times on business interruption plans is okay, as we’re setting up a team who has access and how do we make sure that they have access, right? Obviously, when we’re doing a business interruption plan, we have to account for some people not being present Exactly. For whatever reason, you know, maybe they don’t have access, maybe they’re in a different location, maybe they so So even you know, the people who are marketing teams at one or their social media managers really managing everything, we have to sort of plan out that contingency and see which users would have access in those types of scenarios. Yeah, I always tell the clients that I work with is never always have more than one admin, never just add more, just have one person because that person might be doing other things in the event of a crisis. So it’s always important to have regardless of if you’re a one person team, making sure that you have a strategy for disseminating out the information that you need to because that one person could be in front of a camera, while all of these other things need to happen. So you’re exactly right, and preparing your team and making sure that it’s, it’s tackled,
Ben Pankonin 16:40
right, right. So you know, when we have a couple people helping, right, maybe you are the marketing team of one. But when that sort of crisis hits, what we’ve got to do and what what can really help you to grow as well is when you’re in the boardroom is to say, I’ve anticipated this kind of crisis. I’m going to take this This role, and but you have to understand that I’m going to need feedback from these people. So like, yeah, I think it’s a really important thing to be able to set that up first. So that when you’re sort of if you were a triage clinic, right, right, you’ve kind of got that person that you’re like, hey, they’re the doctor in this scenario, like, like, they’re going to be slammed, how do we help them to be most efficient? Yeah. And so I think I think what you put together here should provide a great checklist for people to think about that too. And which kind of leads us into that action? Yeah. Like, what is it that what’s it like to be in this moment? Yeah. And so yeah, help us.
Dani Chaney 17:39
Yeah. So when we get started in this sort of phase, I want to say the strategy still continues in this phase. So you’ve, you’ve went ahead, you’ve defined your events, you’ve ranked them. This is where you decide okay, now it’s time to actually plan for those. So I think again, starting with your five so what can you prepare? What tools can you utilize, you know, in this example we kind of have to the right is, obviously in an impending hurricane, you’ll want to pre approve those get that strategy approved. This is where you actually execute those levels and move forward with them. And then kind of as we continue, this is one that’s very close to Ben’s harness. He worked very closely and some of you might have heard this specific example.
Ben Pankonin 18:23
Yeah, you know, good bank in the Midwest, but, but really an inspiring story. And they had reached out kind of just before they were, they were getting an award for this event, which was kind of an inspiring situation. But if you haven’t ever seen this video, Jean, who happened to be the branch president, long history in banking, had this scenario where you know, the tornado came, you know, to literally wipe out the bank. And if you see the photos there, they’re pretty amazing and I’d shared about it personally on social media. Back when it happened, this is actually a picture of their bank. And, you know, I was watching, it was kind of a crazy thing to hear the story kind of come out from the Weather Channel, but then to sort of uncover the story behind it and know the bank and of those people to see the way that that happened. Obviously, on one hand, we’re just thankful that everybody was okay. But Jean in his bravery sort of locked his employees into a bank vault. And, of course, someone had to stay outside to shut the door. And, you know, he just sort of spun at once and said, Hey, I, you know, just spun it. And I knew I was going to go into a crawl space sort of area. And I think, when you think about that, in terms of the way we think about how do we sort of evolve in a crisis? Yeah, some of it, they had, he’d already thought about what he was going to do if that ever happened. But he also then, you know, they were able to leverage that and say, you know, as, as a band That has experienced this kind of situation. Here’s how we can build stronger. And I think it’s It was a beautiful example. And I’m glad things worked out, although they ended up having to really help rebuild that community. Yeah. Which also became a part of it, right. Sometimes we think we started have to parachute in as the strong one in this scenario. Yeah. And they were able to come in and say, we’re rebuilding right along with you. And you know, what our stories align. And I think that’s one of the things that I found was really powerful about it, is when you experience a crisis with your community, they’re able to approach them with a kind of empathy that everyone else feels motivated by.
Dani Chaney 20:40
Yeah. And, you know, look at us again, for this example, in Nebraska for all the flooding that we have recently had, it’s impacted so many of the communities in the Midwest and so I’ve heard a lot of stories from the partners that I work with on you know, just getting information out helping the community, get the financial resources that they need, and obviously some more more options than others, and especially for those in the ag space, they were really impacted by farmers who then bank with them. And that’s really impacted their community. So natural disasters, kind of regardless of where you are, it’s important to understand not only how they’ll impact your bank and that’s instance where this you see the picture here to to the right, this impacted the spank but if you know it hits a farming community and it doesn’t quite reach the bank, it’s impacted that community and been like you said, engaging the community and, and coming together and uniting this was really a story of bravery, but also a good example here to show that you need to be prepared for something like this. And you know, how do you disseminate out that information as the storm comes? And then what do you do after clearly when this bank is you can’t go to this bank? So that’s a great example.
Ben Pankonin 21:48
Right? No, I think that’s it’s just a really, you know, important thing to figure out what is it that ties you right? If we say that we’re committed to a community and that community is experiencing it Something as a whole, we have to we have to show that we feel it in a similar way to the people we’re reaching. Yeah. And I think that’s one of the things that certainly Midwest did an incredible job of but, you know, part of that was because it really did affect them in an incredible way. Yeah. So. So it really interesting way, you know, some of them aren’t always as heartfelt the some of the time, you know, we have these experiences that to the outside world almost look like it might be our fault. Yeah. And even though, you know, we all sort of know that hackers and those sorts of things are bound to happen. You know, this is, this is kind of a harder one. Yeah, the census.
Dani Chaney 22:41
Yeah. And we were talking about this earlier, a lot of you’re probably looking at these logos and you cringe because you think, Oh, my gosh, I know how this directly impacted my financial institution. I know how many cards I had to reprint for the target breach. I know you know, how many customers have asked me questions about Am I safe from the respect to equal facts, you know, leak, and so I think This is one that yes, we see publicly how how this does or doesn’t impact these companies. But then you guys all see that in terms of how that actually the cost of that impacts your financial institution, too. So
Ben Pankonin 23:11
yeah, I had a number of calls in the middle of the target one was was kind of prolific one where people are replacing so many cards, and you’re just dealing with, it was amazing. Because, again, what we go back to is, a lot of times we’ve thought of the logistics of how to get that many cards out. But But I was getting a lot of phone calls from some clients that would say, Okay, if I phrase it this way, is this Okay, like, now, I think we’re starting to experience this at a more regular unfortunate pace. But thinking through that, that phrasing, even before that happens can be a real good advantage to help you think more strategically, because much of the time when you’re in the moment, you’ve got to think strategically about is it going to happen today. Are they going to get it back like so you’ve got DNA To be specific about but some of that overall language, you can actually be strategic before it happens.
Dani Chaney 24:05
Yeah, and I think so many of our partners now they actually give out resources on how to stay protected online, you know, we have the holiday season coming up. And so I’ve worked with a lot where they’re trying to figure out how do we get these, you know, cyber aware tips out and cyber Awareness Month happening, you know, just making sure that they’re informing their customers, but also positioning themselves as a thought leader in this space. So for a lot of you, you likely have some of the this pre planning or this pre prepping here because you’re informing your customers. You know, I remember when skimmers or a thing at the gas station where people were basically putting on a plastic part where you swiped your card out, and that impacted a lot of financial institutions and that they needed to make the public aware. Hey, you know, this is what this looks like this is you know what to do if you see one. So a lot of you probably have the pre prepping for this category down but it’s just figuring out, how do you get that information out when your customers are coming to you and they have all these options. And knowing that they are a part of that. So we’ve This is another thing, we’re kind of in this reactive phase now. So we’ve we’ve made the plans, we may did pre prep. And now we’re kind of in what I call that that crisis mode, which is actually executing that. So we’ve provided a lot of examples here. And you know, you’ve developed your plan, and then you need to decide how you will actually execute that. So we live in a 24, seven news cycle. Unfortunately, you know, we can’t impact the timing of some of those events that happen. And so, you know, I kind of put this to the right here, you know, as we’re going through this, you’ve identified it, you’ve ranked it, you’ve developed those plans. Alright, so now it’s time to announce it’s time to monitor that conversation. It’s time to respond to people. And not only that, it’s time to be consistent in the responses. So again, you know, we talked a lot about building your team, you need to make sure that the messages that you’ve tasked those people with putting out are consistent because that can really come back and impact your brand. So that’s not something I want to see. So in this phase two, we talked talk a lot about conflict resolution. Of course, your goal is to make everyone happy, you want to make sure that, you know, given the situation that not everyone is going to be happy. But you want to make sure that you’re positioning your financial brand in this conflict resolution phase that’s again in the court of public opinion. And then, of course, knowing when you might need to take legal action and take some litigation PR, which does happen occasionally.
Ben Pankonin 26:22
Yes. Unfortunately, you’re right.
But you know, I think, kind of thinking through how we develop a team that’s resilient in that
Dani Chaney 26:33
exactly. Yeah, we’ve talked, you know, throughout this, it’s your team that’s really going to help execute all of this. So one of the things that I would suggest and something that, you know, some of your situations might be better than others are running, kind of a mock activity, a simulated PR crisis, so to speak. So, you know, you maybe only inform a few people, but you kind of let the team know, hey, you know, we’re going to be running an internal activity and see how your team does and again, it’s probably hard to repair For some of those, but in the instance of a natural disaster, utilize the examples that we’ve given to say, Hey, you know, we might be prepared for this, but hey, let’s actually execute this. And another thing is, bring in some crisis trainers, you know, sometimes training more than one person in front of a camera can be a little bit of difficult. So we want to make sure that when they come in that your team is is kind of ready to respond to those people. And then again, setting up a committee, we’ve we’ve talked about this kind of throughout the webinar is, you know, set up a committee to talk about it first, and then bring those ideas and solutions to your leadership team to show Hey, we need to be better prepared for this. This is what we’ve done. We’d like to then run a mock activity or whatever that is. I had a really good question in from Lauren that asked about how do we set up the right workflow for these kinds of scenarios. And, you know, one of the things that I found back when I was doing more with it, disaster recovery, things like that, well, we would have happened when stuff hit the fan, right? We would sort of have this moment where you would realize that there is one person who can help solve the problem, right? In that case, it was the IT person. Yes. So what I would often do is say, Okay, I know that you’re going to have a situation in which you need to give me a status update, right?
Ben Pankonin 28:22
I can communicate that. And I can manage a whole lot of people, but you can’t get your job done any faster if I keep asking you about it, or if I let other people have access to you. And so one of the things that we found in doing a lot of these is separating out the people who can solve the problem, right? from the people who need to communicate the problem. Yeah. And from the people who need executive level experience to help you understand, right? So when it’s something like a card situation, we’re going to refund a whole bunch of cards, we need the person who’s at the executive level, who says, here’s the decision. separate that out from the person who’s going to maybe solve the problem, maybe that’s an IT, you know, maybe that’s in facilities, you know, depends on those things. And then we’ve got the person who has to communicate the problem in most of this webinar is really about the person who’s communicating the problem, and how they connect with the team. Because you know, depending on the size of your team, and how that involves, those three positions, in any financial institution are different.
Dani Chaney 29:25
Yeah, and you’re exactly right. You mean sometimes that those teams might be so small, so they might actually pull in customer service people to disseminate out that communication plan. And again, it’s important to have the right talking point someplace so you can be consistent with that message.
Ben Pankonin 29:39
Right, right. You know, depending on the size of your institution, you may have people underneath your communications person, right like that, that sort of are helping with other aspects of that. But when you can separate those out, you may have to kick something back up to the communication or to the executive person to say, All right now it’s it’s your time I need a sound bite or I need this thing. But when you can clearly identify those three different areas, then then you sort of have a way to triage that I mean, oh, yeah, it’s it’s no different than hospital. Yeah, it’s no different than, you know, a lot of other things. But when we can move those three in different areas, gives us that flexibility. And quite honestly, it’s about solving the problem. Thank you. As communications professionals, sometimes people look to us to say, Okay, well, yeah, but you’re just about communicating, you say no, if I can take that, if I can take the burden away from the people who have to solve it, and the people have to make decisions on it. And I can communicate just what they need to know. And, you know, be that relay back to them to say, Okay, I just need to know this. Yeah. Then it allows them the freedom and mental energy to be able to solve those problems. Exactly.
Dani Chaney 30:51
Yeah, you’re exactly right in thinking that and again, you know, kind of as we wrap up this, this second section, I wanted to just kind of give you two thoughts here and again, is, you know, thinking on 2020, if you don’t have some of these plans in place, the first thing you should do is set a date for implementing a plan and then maybe work backward from there. So how can you actually Yes, you can be prepared. But have you actually thought about how will we react to this live event or threat says happening? And again, you know, I’ve been involved in some of those simulation activities where, you know, we, we partnered with the Red Cross, and we had the Red Cross come in, and they simulated a tornado. And basically, it was our position to then put ourselves in front of a camera or whatever that might be to say, Hey, here’s how we’re tackling this. So, again, it might take executing some of those in a in a sampling to better understand how you’ll do that and then know who will help you. So again, where we keep reiterating, do you have the right team in place? And if you do not, who can you approach on your team to better build that and to strengthen that and know, hey, when this happens, we have this as part of our plan, that these are the team members and again, Ask those change or as you kind of set up those administrators making sure that you have a backup for those people who might also be being used and other situations as well.
Ben Pankonin 32:11
Nice now, we talked just a little bit we hinted a little bit about feedback. Yes. When that kind of comes back in. Obviously, we have to have some feedback to be able to present. Here’s what happened, here’s what’s going on. But it’s a lot bigger than just
Dani Chaney 32:27
just that it is yes. And I think a lot of times we focus on the negative aspects of some of these communications, but there is a lot of positivity that comes out of them as well. So we’re kind of in this recovery phase now. So I added a statistic in here because it does take an organization a while to understand how that financially has impacted them. So and then since of target, we know that that’s impacted them. It’s still ongoing. For some of these ones that are happening. This recovery phase can actually take a long time, but in terms of reputation management, you can sort of learn not me Packed right away. So obviously that that impacts you in an economic way, the social responsiveness is a little bit more something that you can find out right away. And then the outcome to stakeholders, how do you position that to the people who are involved in those boards and all of that. And so, from there, you know, again, it takes a while to better understand that, but then how can you ignite genuine change? So again, how are we positioning our financial institution if a product went down, or if all the cards got cut off? Or if something happened? What are you going to do to say, Hey, we’re sorry, this happened, we are planning that this won’t happen. Again, this is how we’re changing as a business.
Ben Pankonin 33:36
That’s awesome. And I love the transition in here to target because I’ve asked, I have some friends in the IT security space, and I’ve said, hey, look, target stocks up, like things are okay at Target. Yeah, did it really matter? And, and I love the way that you’re illustrating. It’s about a latent response to a lot of these interactions.
Dani Chaney 33:58
And I think here, you know, We, from the public, we still shop at Target when we need something we go there. And I think what’s really happening is that they’re still seeing the economic and social impacts of this happening. So obviously, it’s impacted them fingers are different. But you know, between that 200 $300 million area right now, obviously, they’ve had a loss in revenue, but that’s not a lot to them as well. They’ve had class action lawsuits, and then public distrust, which I know is changing that perception as target is releasing new things. But you know, in a way that that’s sort of priceless. If you know, you might opt to shop somewhere else, because you don’t, that did impact you and you did have a breach in your.
Ben Pankonin 34:39
Yeah, although although my wife told me shortly after this incident happened, she says, probably because I was ranting about how many, how many phone calls that were happening around target responses that she says, she says, Hey, I came home from Target today. And I said, you know, sort of like what happened because, well, they offered me their credit card and I said No, I’m struggling to trust you with a credit card. That’s not a target card right now. Right. So, so it’s kind of funny because she because they kind of looked at me funny, but I said, No that, like, that’s part of the reality for them. Right. is they have a desire to be in the, you know, to have you carry the target credit card and certainly had an impact there too. Oh, yeah. So there’s, there’s some interesting impacts there. Some of it, I think target did well, some of it, they didn’t do well. Yeah. But I think it’s an interesting place to look at what that long term impact is for them.
Dani Chaney 35:34
Yeah. And I think, you know, as we transition into these two areas, you know, I talked a little bit about tacking and jibing. When when would you choose to do one of the two and so I think, you know, we’ll cover this but you know, really tacking is, you know, those those likes, it’s people being excited about it, it’s progress is being made in the desired direction. So, again, we go back to that Wells Fargo example where they were updating on Twitter every couple of hours. You know, one of the first things that I do Do when a product or service is down or when I’m having an issue as all see if other people are having that issue first around me, but then better decide, hey, you know, is this impacting the public as well. So if I see that that business is already acknowledging that that’s happening and they’re making progress in the desired direction, I understand like, our software is software base, you know, we’ve talked a lot about, hey, if our software, there are multiple ways that our software could be impacted, obviously, we have social channels that plug into that, but we would want to make sure that we’re communicating that out and in the instance where something would happen. So, this is the example that I use for attacking is obviously you want to go in the direction of positivity, but that is not always the case. So you would go into driving, I am impressed with your usage
Ben Pankonin 36:47
of sailing knowledge. Yeah, I have taken a day long class on how to sail and I’m impressed is great. So so some of that is going to wander around. direction is switching directions, right?
Dani Chaney 37:02
Yes, you’re you’re not quite caught by the wind, but you’re in this phase that you need to change directions. So, for instance, you know, we have we focus a lot on, hey, we’re having all of these comments come in, there is something that’s happening, people can access this people are not happy from this. Sometimes that comes to you directly. And people notice a product first, but it can also come from the opposite direction. So we have had a few questions come in about acquisitions. And so they happen a lot, you know, is is your acquire is the banker acquiring is are they changing their name, there’s so many aspects that can go into this. So really positioning this as an opportunity to build better infrastructure to bring the community together under a new name, you know, you could really the plan here with an acquisition in this specific example is monitor what’s happening even pre monitor obviously, you have customers that will give you their feedback on that, but really, we see a lot Have people go to Facebook and other social channels to say, hey, this bank was bought out and such and such has changed. I think being cognizant of that. And then better understanding how you can get in front of the public when that happens. So if it’s, you know, you acquire a bank and you’re in your infrastructure or technology or something along those lines changes, or they integrate together as the larger one purchases, I think it’s really important to stay on top of that, and to acknowledge when better infrastructure is happening. And so maybe it’s a combination to better serve the community. You start with that you release that before the public can actually say, hey, we’ve expected these things to be fixed. And then change the direction and the mentality of that, you know, so much of this is staying ahead of the public. And I think that can really help your PR crisis a lot is if you acknowledge it sort of as it’s just starting to happen. Yes, it might not turn into something large but reminding people, hey, we’re aware of this. This is what we’re doing to move forward and I think really, that that is driving is just Making sure that you understand when it’s time to change direction, instead of waiting for when it’s too long to change the public opinion when they’ve the court of public opinion has already decided, Hey, I’m not happy about this. And I think I want to make a switch or I want to do something different.
Ben Pankonin 39:17
Awesome. So we have some kind of pro tips as some pro pro sailing tips. So some of the time where we have to change your course. Right? If some of the time inevitably we, you know, maybe it was our mistake. Maybe it was that this is the way it’s, you know, we can we can roll with it. Right. Yeah. So, so some of the time I think we’re given a gift in crisis, right? It’s something that happened that we can say, Hey, you know what, this rides alongside of our customer sentiment when we talk about something like the tornado crisis, right? That’s something that we can say. This is something that actually shows the empathy that we have with our community and the people who follow us. Sometimes it goes against that, right? Sometimes it’s it’s a crisis that our customers look like. We’re not connecting with them. And it separates, right. And I think that’s a great distinction that we have between those, those really two different directions is, some of the time the crisis actually benefits us in connecting with our customers. Yeah. And sometimes it threatens that, and figuring out how to navigate those two is a really important
Dani Chaney 40:26
Yep, I added in here zigzagging your way through it, because I think sometimes that really is what it is you want to get in there. And it might be a little rocky, but your opportunity is to get out there and then get it over. And again, it’s important to then study how that impacts you with some of these might blow over in a couple of days. But again, does that does that impact you from an economic from a social perspective isn’t impacting those who invested in your community or on board, things like that. And so, again, it’s distinguishing, they’re out there and you’re This is your opportunity to talk back to them and that’s really what I say and Social media and to a lot of our clients who are saying, I’m really nervous to be there, hey, I want to shut my comments off, hey, I don’t, I’m just really nervous about this. This is your opportunity to talk back to people. And just because they might have something negative to say does not mean that you should hide that or not respond, this is an opportunity to really sail through the wind and to to better understand what your customers expect and want in times of crisis. And then understanding to that, sometimes it’s just a zigzag and making sure that you get out there and that you can communicate what needs to happen. So then you can study the impact and then better build for the future.
Ben Pankonin 41:36
Awesome, so useful, gave us this framework, right of how we anchor in thinking about social media PR, how do we start planning for the future? How do we, you know, brainstorm, understand them, anticipate really, how do we act in that route, sort of what’s the thing that we’re going to do when when push comes to shove? How do we triage how do we build the right team? How do we make Make sure we communicate that. And then lastly, you know, the feedback reporting. Where is it that we drive that? And I think, you know, that inspired. We had some some questions that that came in one of them, I think, is one that many of you may struggle with in a number of different aspects. And that is one of the things that shouldn’t be perceived as a crisis, but sometimes does is that of acquisitions. And we had a couple questions come in around, how do we communicate around acquisitions, and I know you’ve had some experience doing that. And I’ve certainly actually did a session a few days ago in which we talked about that as well. What would be your your advice on dealing with acquisitions and looking at that PR plan?
Dani Chaney 42:46
I think it’s hard and I think it depends on the size of those two, like I had mentioned a little bit earlier, those acquisitions can can stir a lot of positivity and they can also make people feel frazzled and that they’re watching their smaller community. Make maybe bought by a larger bank, and that can leave some of them unsettled. But, you know, we go back to that storytelling aspect and staying ahead of it, and publicly announcing that, you know, you’re coming back together to better serve the community. And it’s all about the positioning of that. And then better understanding how the products won’t see a lapse when that happens, too. Because I know a lot of the ones that I’ve worked with that have acquired some of the, the comments or feedback on that is about infrastructure and things like that, and the wariness that can happen as those two teams come together. So I’d say, for me, it’s it’s storytelling, it’s getting ahead of it, to present it as an opportunity for the community to grow and to better serve. But then again, at that same time, acknowledging, hey, these are the things that could come out from this, and this is what we may need to respond to. So being aware of that, and then understanding how you’re going to respond to that if and when that does happen.
Ben Pankonin 43:51
Yeah, you know, a couple things that I was sharing with a group A few days ago about acquisitions. One of those is understanding how that story ends. packs your bigger story. Yeah. So when we think about anticipating, like, why did we make this acquisition? Why is it happening? What What is it behind that acquisition? It was really interesting. I was talking with a bank that had not made acquisitions in. I mean, it was close to 100 years, right. This restarted had not really made acquisitions then made an acquisition. And I said, Why? And they said, Well, well, the, I mean, quite honestly, it was basically a failed bank. And I said, Okay, that’s fine. Why? And she said, Well, but I mean, you know, it’s kind of, I said, No, I said, at the end of the day, you just told me you started as a commercial bank, back at this time period, is it at the end of the day, you know, that it’s better for your customers in your region, by making this acquisition than letting either that bank go under or get bought out by another alternative and when you begin to message with The real why behind that story. And you start digging several layers deep. I had another banker come up to me and said, I’m not really sure why we made this acquisition. But I’ve never really thought about this. If once we start to do that it starts to uncover the real story. And we start to get something that it has to be better, right? It has to be better for your customers where you shouldn’t have done that. Yeah. And and the reality is, there’s usually some really genuinely great reasons for why we’re doing it. And it isn’t just balance sheet. And so I think that’s one of the pieces. And then I think, you know, we’ve got that, that other example of, you know, when, when we’re making an acquisition, we have to figure out how do we sort of bring those two together. And when we bring them together, it’s not enough to say, hey, by the way, here’s our posted core values on the wall, we have to help them navigate that the new brands trust that they’re just coming apart of, they have to understand this story. So if you’re making the acquisition, and you’ve got, you know, 50 employees that just became part of your organization, and they don’t understand what your history is and how those histories blend together, then it’s a detriment.
Dani Chaney 46:14
Yeah. And you know, an acquisition before it happens. And so that’s a really good opportunity of being able to something that you can actually plan for, is if you are acquiring banks, if you’re acquiring other financial institutions, that is something that you can stay ahead of and rank that, you know, if that’s happening in 2019, or 2020, for you something that you can actually start utilizing and understand now based on the kind of platform that we’ve we’ve kind of you’ve or you’re in that planning phase, how do you take action, and then understanding that feedback, how it’s impacted, basically, the bottom line, if anything, and then what is the public opinion of this and has it changed over time? So again, staying ahead of that, and then monitoring and better understanding what actually people think about that too, is so important. It’s awesome what it you know, Danny, this has been a fun webinar, as we kind of tackle some of those things that you know are coming up.
Ben Pankonin 47:07
Yeah. Yeah, I think we’ve got some some other webinars scheduled out for the end of the year. And next month, you’re working on some of that topic as well.
Dani Chaney 47:16
Yeah. So next month, we’re actually going to cover reviews and listings. So what are those mean for you? How, why is it important to monitor them? Why is it important to respond to people and this goes, you know, a little bit beyond social and into digital as well. So we’re getting into the Google’s the yelps, all of that all of the places where all of those reviews go, how do you understand those? How do you tackle them? Why is it good for you to tackle them? And then for your listings, as well branches, closed branches open acquisitions happen? So why are those two things important not only for your local SEO, but important for your brand?
Ben Pankonin 47:49
So yeah, so and listings and reviews. One of the things that a lot of times we talk about is sort of like how to listen for them, but yeah, but we’re going to be talking not just how to listen for them, but how to get them right. Yes. How do we how do we influence our market. There are some banks that are phenomenal at this. And there are some that struggled to get reviews. Sometimes we have those questions of, Hey, I don’t have a review on this location. And we’ll we’re going to be talking about that too. And the risks to not having reviews. Yeah. So there’s, so there’s a great risk component, feel free to invite anybody who’s interested in that side of it, and then feel free. I think it’s a great marketing topic as well. So, so we’re going to be talking about some fun strategies to make that happen.