There’s been a lot of chatter recently about public health concerns and their potential impact on day to day business activities – but this isn't the first-time businesses have been faced with unforeseen events. Every day leaders come face to face with events that have the potential to disrupt business, in the short or long-term.   

This got us thinking about crisis planning & preparedness. Only one-third of marketers and PR pros say they have an up-to-date crisis plan Whether it’s a public health crisis, a natural disaster or another unforeseen event, it is crucial to be prepared, as 25 percent of businesses never reopen following a major disaster.

In the event of a long-term disruption, is your organization prepared to talk to its employees, investor, customers and suppliers in a coherent, meaningful way?  Do you have the system in place to communicate, wholesale, to a large audience in a time of unanticipated disruption from the norm?  Every company needs to have a plan in place that leverages the power and reach of your website and digital networks, and a related content strategy, to be able to communicate calmly, factually and effectively. 

Our core recommendation includes having a “dark” page on your website, or a separate dark microsite with clear, concise content that you can bring to light in the event of something changing rapidly.  

Our recommendations for your "dark" page: 

  1. A spot for a clear statement from the CEO/leadership about what is happening and the organization’s strategy for managing
  2. A section with FAQ that you should anticipate from all constituents, with precise answers
  3. An interactive component that enables engagement between the company and its key audiences
  4. A section dedicated to the health, wellbeing and concerns of your employees

Boston Digital has developed and made available a template for this kind of situation and advises all of our clients to have it at the ready.

Ultimately the goal is to never have to leverage this kind of platform.  But the fact that it exists should give you peace of mind that in the event of something unanticipated, your organization is prepared to communicate and engage quickly, transparently and effectively.