Artisan Marketing Communications offers clients PR and marketing communications advice, practical support and implementation.

Sunday, October 29, 2006

Crisis PR: a real challenge

Crisis PR should be in big demand, just take Manchester’s very own Shere Khan Group and iSoft as two recent and local examples.

Shere Khan got an unhealthy dose of PR for using an untraditional condiment with its poppadums: cockroaches although to be fair they were fresh and organic. iSoft, a company that wasn’t afraid to be a little boastful, was taken to pieces on the front page of the Guardian; when was the last time you read about a provincial software company as the main subject of a lead story for a national newspaper?

I had a chat with Shere Khan’s PR; “what action did you take,” I asked. I reassured smile came back, new overhaul in management and a new PR agency had gained a fabulous account from them a few weeks before. It wasn’t his problem and good luck for the agency that won it.

I sometimes read pointers in business magazines by self-confessed PR gurus or hear Max Clifford talking basic common sense about crisis PR and getting enormous amounts of coverage and kudos for saying so little.

But could they help Kazakhstan’s crisis PR problem: Borat?

How do you tackle that?

The Kazakhs though are on the PR offensive:

Failed attempts to get Borat’s creator Sacha Baron Cohen to visit Kazakhstan
Failed legal threats
And now a $40 million film called Nomad, which will be the country’s biggest budget movie. It tells the story of the Kazakh tribes repelling the Mongol hordes. Are you gripped yet? It aims to combat the Borat strike against their glorious nation.

Sometimes, just like a boxer, you have to duck and parry and sometimes soak up the pressure.

As for Shere Khan…now that agency is going to have to be talented and clever in the extreme.


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