If something becomes the nationwide conversation piece at the water cooler and in the coffee shop, you know it’s a subject people are bothered about, or interested in.
We brits have long had an obsession with the weather, but in the last week or two, we’ve gone into overdrive, discussing where to buy the best fan, the merits of freezing water bottles (yes, that’s a thing) and whether it’s ok to wear thongs (ok, flip-flops) to work.
While the heat is wonderful for many businesses, there will be many who will see it as more of an ‘issue’ to be overcome or retrospectively tackled.
On the one hand, tourism businesses in the UK are probably pretty chuffed that so many families are steering their vacation decisions toward a ‘staycation’ rather than hopping abroad.
But there will be others for whom the heat means ‘missing out’ in some way.
This could mean their offering is really not the preferred choice in the blistering heat, or that staff are less – understandably so – productive in the tiresome temperatures.
As a communications agency, we’ve spent the last few days hearing from clients and contacts who have needed help to navigate issues they hadn’t anticipated would arise as the result of the sunnier climes.
This has included those organisations feeling forced to cancel events, for health and safety reasons; and others feeling that their usual business output is going to be left wanting, or compromised, as a result of manufacture strain in the heat.
What all this points to, is a timely reminder that communications and PR really does play a critical role in business resilience.
Like insurance, you can risk going without it, but it could cost you dear.
Having communications support in place – even on a low-level support approach – can mean having the guidance you need when you’re caught out by issues, incidents…or mother nature’s weather hand.
So, how do you ensure you’re using storytelling effectively throughout the summer?
Celebrate your staff throughout the season. This is the feel-good period of the year. Make sure your internal communications as well as your media relations, is ramping up a gear and focusing on employee engagement. Encourage your staff to tell you what charity initiatives and activities they’re involved in this summer, or any particularly engaging piece of news which their colleagues deserve to know.
Embrace the fact that the media refer to this as the ‘silly season’. It’s a time when there are fewer journalists at their desks, and more demands on those who are working. Providing good clean editorial content, with a superb photograph, will really help your chance of gaining coverage.
Even if you’re not ‘seeing’ your customers, you can ensure you’re using storytelling on your website, blog, social media and in other stakeholder communication, to remind them you’re there, you’re still advancing, still innovating, still serving them and their community. Look at what content creation scenarios are needed on an ongoing basis. Introduce a schedule of the kind of content you could include…and stick to it!
Look at whether your CSR activity could be improved and whether charitable and social enterprise partnerships aligned with your work could be a key part of your future storytelling and communication. It says a lot about your culture as a business to work with and for. It’s a great time of the year to look at implementing Employer Supported Volunteering.
And if you had to cancel an event, tackle a dip in business, or navigate another crisis or issue, seek advice. Look at what you and your team can learn, whether there’s a way to ‘tell the story’ in such a way that it opens you to new audiences and opportunities. This will be particularly important if you’re a charity and need to bridge the gap of missing fundraising revenue.
For more advice, contact us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org
- Posted by deborah
- On 25th July 2018
- 0 Comments