In the wake of backlash against an undercover video shot by the anti-choice, fake corporate entity Center for Medical Progress, Planned Parenthood put into action a textbook crisis communications plan. Planned Parenthood was prepared, decisive, empathetic, engaging, and connected. The below infographic shares the key pillars to the organization’s successful strategy.
Read Beth Kanter’s guest post here for more information on Planned Parenthood’s exemplary response.
Crisis Communication Lessons from Planned Parenthood
Anatomy of Strong Crisis Communication: What Planned Parenthood Did Right
- Prepared – It already had a crisis communication plan in place that it could tailor and put into action quickly; it recognized more attacks were coming and prepared its supporters to brace themselves.
- Decisive – It responded quickly (with the facts in hand) and decisively through written and digital channels (email, video, Twitter).
- Empathetic – PPFA’s response struck the right tone. It was strong and did not concede wrongdoing but acknowledged that the optics weren’t optimal.
- Engaging – Planned Parenthood’s supporters are passionate and ready to act – through Twitter, blog posts, emails to Congress, etc. The group used the power of personal stories to connect with people on the issue.
- Connected – PPFA prioritizes building and maintaining strong ties with allies and decision makers willing to stand in support of the organization
Planned Parenthood has had a rough few weeks.
To recap, an anti-choice organization called the Center for Medical Progress (CMP), a fake corporate entity, captured undercover videos of Planned Parenthood Federation of America (PPFA) executives allegedly discussing the sale of fetal tissue. Actors posing as buyers from a fictional medical company met with a PPFA official while hidden cameras rolled. CMP then sliced and diced three hours of footage to create an eight-minute clip that makes it appear as though Planned Parenthood was acting nefariously. CMP’s main purpose is to put Planned Parenthood out of business.
Guest Post: Beth Kanter
Our interactive session at the Fall 2013 Communications Network Conference in New Orleans was a blend of content delivery and peer learning – a conversation about the value, different approaches and models, and best practices. Betsey Russell captured the highlights of the content in this blog post, “Boosting Nonprofit Communication Capacity.” A copy of our presentation and some of the takeaways follow.
I’ve noticed lately there’s a new word out there – or rather an old word in a new context. “Curation” – an act I think of as being done in museums – is showing up more and more often in the communications field. I find it everywhere: while catching up with a colleague who tells me she’s been “curating the program for a conference”; in an article in Buzzfeed that tells me that @brainpicker, a favorite Twitter feed that I follow, is the work of an “online curator” named Maria Popova; in a Mashable review of Tumblr, a popular blogging platform and social networking site, that explains how Tumblr has started doing its own “curating.”
What “curate” seems to mean right now is find a lot of beautiful and interesting things, put them together in one place and then share your collection with others, usually via social media. And all of a sudden it’s what all the cool kids are doing – the hot new way to both experience and share things found on the internet.
Which leads me to the obvious question: As a communications professional should I be curating?