Have you noticed that your brand strategy is just like a blue print? You lay it out before you start building your brand, with precise planning and customization. But have you considered what you would do if your brand encountered a crisis situation, like unhappy customers or a failed product? It is important to plan ahead for crisis management. Think of it as a “panic room” in your blueprint.
A recent example of crisis management is how Under Armour dealt with accusations from the U.S. speed skating team. The skaters, who went away without medals, outwardly blamed Under Armour’s uniforms for their poor performance at the 2014 Olympics.
There is a great lesson that can be learned from how Under Armour handled the team’s accusations. The company didn’t become defensive or shut down the reports that their apparel poorly performed. Instead, they reached out to their consumers, replaced the skaters’ gear during the Olympics and renewed their contract through the 2012 games.
Under Armour’s experience with unhappy customers is a great example of how crisis management is an important part of your brand strategy. Here is some advice on how to prepare a “panic room” for when your products or services miss the mark.
- Have an open door policy. It’s important for your consumers to know you are willing to about their concerns. Your consumers will feel respected and appreciated if you take the time to validate their concerns and also give you the opportunity to explain situations and offer ways to turn their experience into a positive one.
- Don’t play the blame game. Even though the U.S. skaters said they believed their chance at the podium sank because of Under Armour’s uniform, the company never retaliated by insinuating it was the skaters’ abilities that cost them a medal. Under Armour even replaced the uniforms and sent the “faulty” ones to a research lab to be evaluated.
- Enlist Help. Have others besides the CEO answer questions and conduct interviews so that your consumers know that everyone in the company is on the same page. It may also be a good idea to reach out to loyal customers to share their positive experiences in testimonies.
A brand strategy is the best way to ensure your marketing plan covers all of the bases. At Susan J. Copywriting Solutions, all of our customers have the advantage of beginning their marketing plan with a researched and original brand strategy to fit their needs.