Nothing tests an organization’s communication strengths like a crisis. Whether from a leadership scandal, a product recall, or a data breach, how you deal with a crisis can make or break your organization. Compounding the problem is the speed at which fake news can travel. When the damage occurs, companies often have just minutes to prepare a response. One small mistake and your organization could be the victim of rumors/false information, misinformed employees, and eventual employee turnover.
Up until recently organizations were limited to communicating crisis response in hastily called meetings, via email to both internal and external employees, or through general word of mouth. While the meetings and emails could each be effective in each their own way, word of mouth can definitely result in fake news being spread. There are however many limitations to these methods — They are inflexible, impersonal (emails), and often take a lot of time and effort to schedule (meetings).
Due to its instantaneous and powerful nature, video is quickly emerging as a preferred communication medium for handling a crisis communication as video is not only an authentic way of communicating, but it is also hyper accessible. Video allows for the dissemination of real time information while at the same time allowing organizations complete control over messaging–something traditional forms of communication can’t offer. And because of security permissions, organizations can easily select and decide who views a video, or more importantly, who doesn’t which ensures even more control during a time of crisis.
Video allows senior leaders a chance to put their face (instead of hiding behind representatives) in front of their people during a time of crisis. When your employees see their leadership on the screen their trust is instantly increased, resulting in increased engagement and retention. Also, through features like commenting, chat, and surveys, employees can play a role in the discussion and voice their own comments or concerns.
It Extends Reach
If you are a large global organization, relying on outdated crisis communication mediums isn’t going to cut it. In a crisis scenario any delay or misinformation can quickly spiral out of control and have potentially devastating consequences . Video allows organization the ability to reach employees regardless of where they are geographically located. Video also helps organizations stay prepared ahead of potential crisis situations. For example, you could create short videos explaining what a potential scenario may mean for staff, and instructions on what they may be required to do. Or, you can quickly live stream a CEO town hall to allow employees the opportunity to ask questions of their own.
Axonn Research found 7 in 10 people view brands in a more positive light after watching interesting video content from them. Based on that statistic, we can easily conclude that by using video, companies can do a much better job of managing employee trust that both their jobs and the organization as a whole will be able to navigate crisis communication scenarios together.