February has been full of activity – and with product launches and campaign expansions up ahead, the busy period doesn’t stop here!

In the B2B world it can be rare that events hitting the general public filter into PR plays for clients. If so, these kind of topics often require a good degree of sensitivity and in the worst case a significant focus on crisis comms. But recent events in Texas buck this trend for reasons which we will explain, and we are keen to share some insights on what PR and comms professionals can take from this.

Communicating in a crisis: don’t let it be a wake-up call!

The Texas Power outage demonstrated a clear lack of preparation for unforeseen circumstances. And if 2020 was anything to go by, we need to start expecting the unexpected!

When confronted with a crisis head on, a lack of preparation can be a huge shock to the system for those not equipped to deal with the problem. So, with the benefits of hindsight, a strategic prioritization of crisis management is essential for those that haven’t done so already! And funnily enough, despite new crises being thrown up in today’s world, the old crisis comms advice has always held firm. You have 24 hours to decide your action plan – so gather your facts and ensure they are accurate before making any decisions! The Six Golden Rules of crisis management still apply.

We can update this with the power of social media. AI can help industry leaders gauge how their audiences are feeling. With hashtags such as #TexasBlackout and #TexasSnowStorm2021 dominating social media throughout the disaster, it should have been simple for leaders to follow audience reactions, meaning effected companies could tailor their messaging reaction accordingly.

A bit of newsjacking was positive and worked well

We worked with our client in the enterprise technology space to weigh-in positively on the crisis, offering commentary to horizontal and energy and utility media on how AI and IoT technology could help the industry avoid such outages in the future, securing a placement in a top-tier oil and gas publication.

Gearing up for a key product launch

We have a virtual press launch to support next month which features a jam-packed agenda of industry sessions and discussions, which are really catching journalist attention. Ahead of the major launch, IBA has been supporting their re-brand through various press releases but also by pulling out the key technology differentiators of the new solution. We’ve taken valuable content from our client’s blog and quickly turned it into pitching material for horizontal media outlets. Positioning our client as thought leaders around topics such as Kubernetes and containerization, the team has established significant groundwork ahead of the launch and gained valuable traction with journalists!

New markets and new regions await!

It’s always nice when a client does what the research says!! The team has also been making significant headway for our enterprise labeling client’s brand presence within their key vertical markets, particularly within the cosmetics media, so much so that they are now looking to take their brand to new geographies – joining the 26% of B2B organizations in our research who said they wanted to expand their brand globally post-Brexit and Covid, and something that the IBA Global Outreach Hub is ready and able to do. Entering new geographies is always an exciting prospect and discussions to expand this campaign into multiple other regions have begun –specifically within the DACH and Nordic areas.

As the vaccination programs rollout worldwide, and we all start to look optimistically towards 2021, it’s good to see how companies with the most nimble comms strategies are shaping the conversation in their industry regardless of and sometimes because of the news of the day!

Georgia Harris is a PR Account Executive at IBA International.

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