What Are People Saying Behind Your Back?

By joanne | 16th March | Marketing Skills, Marketing Strategy, Marketing Training

You could be the best Chief Executive in the world – and Willie Walsh is certainly ranked up there – but sometimes things conspire against you and there’s seemingly nothing you can do about it.  So, how do you control what people are saying about your company when you’re not around?

In a story that has rambled on for months, it seems the only people we haven’t heard from directly are Willie Walsh and Tony Woodley (of the Unite union).  But others are more than happy to put words in their mouths and second-guess what’s happening behind closed doors.

Employees are clearly unhappy, but the city has reacted positively to the cost cuts, with shares rising strongly in spite of the dispute.  I wonder, is it ever possible to keep everyone happy?

Our top marketing tips for controlling what people are saying about your business are:

  1. Don’t let people put words in your mouth.  If you have an opportunity to release statements to the press, or hold interviews, accept them.
  2. Invest in media training – in the middle of a crisis, you don’t want to make things worse by saying the wrong thing or crumbling under pressure from journalists
  3. Consider your internal marketing – communication with your staff is key.  If you don’t tell them what’s happening, they’ll make up their own version of the story
  4. Protect your customers at all costs – or your staff will be lucky to have a business to work for

British Airways has been forced to cancel 50% of its flights this weekend – I dread to think how much that will cost them in compensation.  But that’s not the half of it.  How many of us would consider booking a British Airways flight amid the current turmoil?  Their competitors must be rubbing their hands!

Tags: , , ,