The Clowater Crisis Program

Guest Post by one of my students – Tushar Bharadia @tusharbharadia

Imagine you walk into your college, you’re sitting in your class, and all of a sudden you hear the fire alarm and everyone starts to panic. What do you do? Well by taking The Clowater Crisis Program you, yes you fellow PR friend, can learn how to handle and control a crisis situation! Whether it be your college burning down or a campaign that you’re working on spiral out of control on Twitter, The Clowater Crisis Program will prepare you for the worst case scenario and properly help you send out your messages.

Clowater is his name and crisis communications is his game. In The Clowater Crisis Program, you will be placed in a classroom setting where you have to create a communications team of five people. Your group’s task will be to create a communication plan during a live crisis simulation.

The crisis: Fire! Fire! Fire!
There is a huge fire at your school and it’s spreading fast throughout the area. People are in disarray as there is no communication between handled with students, media, and the community.

There will be live updates on the fire from Clowater throughout the hour.

Your task: Communicate Crisis
Your task is to create a crisis communication strategy to properly communicate with stakeholers, media, and the general public.

The first thing you will want to do is research who needs to be communicated – the audience.
1. Stakeholders
2. Media
3. Public (community)

After you find out your audience, then come up with key messages. As a communicator you have to remember how you want the situation to be perceived.

  • when writing key messages, target each of your messages towards the specific audience.

So for stateholders they need to know how much damage there is (all about the money and give details).

Media they need to know if everyone is safe and that the crisis is being handled quickly. I suggest writing to-the-point and keep it very brief. Everybody listens to the news, especially breaking news like a fire at a school. No lies, so know what you give them is real. Ensure that you will give up-to-dates information as it develops.

Lastly, the general public needs to know about safety and how much impact it will make in the community. Again, you want to tell them the truth and give details (but not too much). You want to give the surrounding community updates on the fire and trust that the crisis is being taken care of. After that, determine what platforms your team are going to use and who will be in charge of writing what; News releases, social media, emails, etc.

Now I could tell you everything about The Clowater Crisis Program, but where’s the fun in that! This is just one example of what you can expect from The Clowater Crisis Program. Don’t wait until your next campaign has a crisis, take control of the situation fast, smooth, and strategically TODAY!